Former European Boxing Champion , After Dinner Speaker, Top Table Guest
Richie Woodhall was raised in the town of Telford in Shropshire from the age of two.
He grew up on a council estate called Woodside and joined the amateur boxing club situated there, aged just 7. He went on to have 110 contests including 43 internationals representing England and Great Britain.
His finest achievement as an amateur was winning a Bronze medal at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul South Korea, losing in the semi final to Roy Jones of USA. This was then followed by winning Gold at the 1990 Commonwealth Games in Auckland New Zealand, both at light/middle weight.
After the Commonwealth Games aged 22 Richie turned professional with London based National Promotions and was managed by the highly respected Micky Duff.
He was given the chance to box for the European title against tough Italian Silvio Branco, who he knocked out in the 9th round to become middleweight champion of Europe.
After 2 successful defences of the European crown he was now undefeated in 21 contests, picking up the Commonwealth title also, which earned him a number 1 ranking in The WBC (World Boxing Council) ratings.
Being the mandatory challenger for the world title Richie had to wait an incredible 20 months for his shot against the champion Keith Holmes of Washington, who was managed by the one and only Don King.
Three weeks before the contest disaster struck when he chipped his elbow bone and dislodged irreplaceable cartilage in a freak accident in the gym. Doctors advised him to pull out of the fight, but manager Micky Duff explained that it could be another year before he got another chance, so he had a quick operation to remove the floating bone and cartilage on the joint and went through with the biggest fight of his life.
In an extremely hostile environment in Maryland Washington, Richie failed in his bid to become a world champion and was stopped in the 12th and final round with 28 seconds left on the clock.
Richie has been now focusing his efforts on commentating and has also been involved with the Great Britain boxers who will representing their country in London at the 2012 Olympics.
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