The Soul of Boxing: Michael Watson, Nigel Benn, Frank Bruno and other big hitters of faith

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9780002740296: The Soul of Boxing: Michael Watson, Nigel Benn, Frank Bruno and other big hitters of faith

What motivates the professional boxer who risks injury and even death every time they climb into the ring? Based on exclusive interviews with Mike Tyson, Frank Bruno and other world class fighters, Phil Shirley uncovers the darker side of those who are paid to inflict harm.


Fight the Good Fight explores the reasons why so many top class boxers have strong religious beliefs. Are they simply an insurance policy in a life threatening industry or do they point to a deeper search for meaning and personal significance? Masculinity, brutality, emotional weakness and compassion run side by side with blow by blow action both in the ring and outside it. Here is a unique and fascinating insight into an industry that produces saints and sinners in equal measure.

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Review:

The Soul of Boxing gets under the skin of the greatest remaining gladiatorial sport, taking its content from the people that really matter--the fighters.

Politicians can have their views, journalists can write reports and comment on the sport, but what is important are the people who want to climb into the ring to box.

This is the thinking behind Phil Shirley's excellent book. The author, an established sports writer, uses his contacts and journalistic skills to bring together a volume which will give the reader a rare insight into what goes on in the mind of the boxer.

The book is at once shocking and poetic, but the many quotes and interviews typify the attitude of boxing's insiders to the sport.

They are the people who live to be in the ring--sometimes for different reasons: money, glory, the will to win or the belief that to pit their strengths against the might of a challenger is their calling in life.

The book shows the glorious and the gruesome sides to the sport, the feelings of those who lose their sons, brothers or friends to the kiss of a glove and the slap of the canvass and the readers are encouraged to make up their own minds about the validity of what is often called the cruellest of sports. --Andrew Thursday

From the Back Cover:

Who motivates the world's greatest fighters?

A major new investigation into the Good, Bad and Ugly side of world class boxing

They risk serious injury and even death every time they climb into the ring. So what is driving the men who are paid to inflict harm? Phil Shirley has had unique access to the private motivations of the most famous boxers today. He reveals that for many there is a constant battle within between the forces of good and evil. Violence, abuse and self-inflicted pain are the way that many cope with an inner turmoil, a tormentor every bit as frightening as their opponent in the ring.

With all the action both inside and outside the ring, here is a remarkable story for all those who love boxing as well as those fascinated by what makes men fight.

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Phil Shirley
Published by HarperCollins UK (1999)
ISBN 10: 000274029X ISBN 13: 9780002740296
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ISBN 10: 000274029X ISBN 13: 9780002740296
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