Family battles motivate Brit boxer ahead of state title bout

TITLE TIME: Adopted Toowoomba boxer Darren Askew.
TITLE TIME: Adopted Toowoomba boxer Darren Askew. Dave Noonan

HE IS on the other side of the world, but family is providing Englishman Darren Askew with motivation for his Queensland junior welterweight title fight on Friday.

Askew relocated to Toowoomba from the Old Dart last year and will fight Mark Ramirez for a state title in front of his adopted home-town crowd at Rumours International.

The 28-year-old has recorded two wins under the tutelage of trainer-manager Brendon Smith to take his professional record to eight wins, six losses and a draw, and thinks he is better prepared for a shot at a title than he was in his previous attempts.

"I've boxed for a few titles before back home in the UK but I was always the challenger taking the fight on short notice," he said. "This time it's different.

"I've had 12 weeks to prepare for this fight. I'm fit and I'm more determined than ever before.

"Both my father and grandfather were champion boxers back home and I'm really looking to replicate their feats out here in Australia."

His father is also providing motivation on a different front.

Askew said his father is facing a battle with cancer, which is something his mother has also had to deal with.

"My mum is in remission for breast cancer and my dad has recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer and underwent surgery ... so he is really on his first steps to recovery," the British boxer said.

"When I enter the ring to fight I come out to You'll Never Walk Alone, which is of course the famous song that the Liverpool Football Club are renowned for, but it really has a deep meaning for me being out here in Australia alone in my fights as well as my parents' constant battles with cancer.

"My trunks also support the Breast Cancer Foundation logo and colours as well as the prostate cancer ones."

Askew plans on returning to England to see his parents and hopes to have a Queensland title belt to show them.

"I'm heading back in three weeks after my fight to see my family and I hope to take that belt back with me," he said.

Askew's fight is one of five title fights on the Smithy Brings the Big Fights 5 card at Rumours International.



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