GARVEY Kelly has been given a ringing endorsement from his manager George Groves as he prepares to turn professional this autumn.
The Swindon welterweight is set to make his bow in the paid ranks in October with the backing of world super-middleweight contender Groves as his manager and Paddy Fitzpatrick as his trainer.
And ‘St George’, who is set to return to the ring on September 20 at Wembley Arena against Christopher Rebrasse for the European title, knows what is like get into the ring with the 26-year-old.
“(Garvey is) very skilled, a patient puncher, he has got a lot of power and he is still maturing,” said Groves.
“He has only been doing strength work for a year now, once that kicks in he will be quite a puncher.
“Even though he is long and lean, he punches very correct, he gives me a torrid time in sparring, I wouldn’t want to be one of his opponents.”
With Groves and Fitzpatrick backing his decision to leave the amateur ranks behind and make the step in the pros, Kelly says that he is blessed to have the backing that he has.
He said: “I’m super excited to turn professional, it is surreal to be honest.
“When I first started boxing I never expected to be turning professional.
“(To have Paddy and George behind me) adds to the extragravance of it all.
“I could have turned pro with some of the other guys in Swindon, we have got a local promoter, but I feel like I have been given a platform and I’m lucky. I’m blessed that I know Paddy, I’m lucky enough to meet George because who knows where we will go to.”
The rangy welterweight says that he has learnt so much from Fitzpatrick both inside and outside the ring.
He said: “Paddy is like a mentor, not only a boxing coach, but a life coach.
“I have known him since I was a boy, I came to the gym at 19, really immature and I’m 26 now and I have learnt a lot from Paddy inside and outside of the gym.
“In terms of boxing, everything I know I have learnt from Paddy. I’m a student of the game, I watch hours and hours of boxing every week, I go home and study the game, it is constant, I live the life.
“George is the same age as me and he has just boxed the biggest fight in British boxing history (against Carl Froch at Wembley in front of 80,000 fans), he is a legend.
“When he walks into a fight he exudes confidence and that is what I’m trying learn to do.”