THEY call him El Gordito (Spanish for Chubbsy) in Paddy Fitzpatrick’s gym – all because he once weighed in two lbs overweight ahead of an amateur fight.

But popular teenager Lewis Roberts now has the world at his feet after he officially turned professional this month.

He walks out wearing a sombrero and has had the drive and ambition to one day become a world champion since he first stepped foot in Fitzpatrick’s’ Ferndale Road gym at the age of six.

Given that Roberts has been working with Fitzpatrick for two thirds of his life, the Swindon coach views the 18-year-old as his little brother.

Fitzpatrick has watched Roberts progress through the amateur ranks, and helped him secure his first sparring session with a professional in London four years ago.

He spoke with great pride therefore when confirming that Roberts will make his professional debut on Mark Neilson’s Fight Town IV card at the MECA on April 18.

“Chubbsy is like my little brother - he has always been around me four or five days a week for 12 years,” said Fitzpatrick.

“People always say to me they want their kid to get into boxing because it teaches them discipline and respect. I disagree, boxing teaches you how to fight.

“The coach teaches discipline and respect. Boxing is a good sport to be involved in because to be good at it you have to control your emotions.

“And that will always help you in life. But being passionate about any sport or hobby will help anyone to grow. To get better at whatever you’re passionate about you have to commit yourself, so you’re taught about dedication.

“Lewis has always wanted to be good at boxing, and he set a goal of turning professional 12 years ago. Every year he tells me he wants to turn professional and be world champion, and now he has achieved the first part.”

As a youngster, Roberts had little strength – Fitzpatrick will admit himself that he was a tad sceptical regarding his ring ambitions.

But seven years after he first entered the ring, Roberts started the find that strength that could turn him into a handy boxer.

The Swindon-based talent developed year-on-year. And with the support of his family, Roberts proved to be one of the town’s most popular amateur fighters.

Fitzpatrick explained: “He sold 250 tickets for a 1,000 capacity amateur show at the Oasis a couple of years ago – that’s a crazy amount of tickets.

“When Lewis was younger, he was a pretty little boxer but didn’t have that strength. But he has developed well and now is an extremely exciting time for him.

“Lewis has never lost his drive for boxing since the age of six, many would take a season off.

“We’ve talked about him turning professional for the last two years. We were going to go outside of the UK and turn him pro at the age of 17. In the end, we were busy enough with the amateurs and decided to get a few more amateur fights in, they are no harm.”