'Today I officially announce my retirement as a fighter' - sad day for Craig Poxton
PUBLISHED: 11:19 01 January 2020 | UPDATED: 11:20 01 January 2020
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Lowestoft boxer Craig Poxton has been forced to retire because of an eye injury.
The popular 31-year-old finishes his career with 14 wins and five defeats - although two of those losses came before he relaunched his career in 2013 after a three-year absence from the ring.
In a statement on his Facebook page, Poxton said: "Today I officially announce my retirement as a fighter.
"After a freak accident at work causing a full thickness cornea laceration with permanent damage to my eye leaving me with less than 10pc vision and lucky I haven't lost it all together, the consultants have told me I would never pass my medical.
"I've had a lot of ups and downs in my two-part professional career and I owe a lot to the people I've been lucky enough to have in my team after somewhat of a false start. Most people know my story and I'm forever grateful for the memories and opportunities that I will never forget.
"Matt Smith my trainer getting me from the 13-stone mess that walked into his gym, giving me advice and direction both inside and out of boxing. Graham Everett, my manager, taking the chance on signing me and getting me the fights and opportunities both on the home shows and away days that we all grew to love.
"Mervyn Turner, my cutman/promoter keeping me in the fight on the away days and providing the local shows. All the fighters/trainers at Professional Boxing Training and Management centre for the countless rounds of sparring learning my trade behind the doors before fight night.
"It's not the way I wanted to go out but with a heavy heart and a tear in my good eye, I say thank you to everyone I know I've missed and not mentioned by name or tag but you know who you are and so do I! I will still be training, keeping myself on some sort of shape other than round, passing on what I can and hopefully helping the younger generation at Ultimate Boxing."
Poxton caused a major upset in February, 2017, when he beat Boy Jones to win the Southern Area super-featherweight title, and later that year pushed Leon Woodstock all the way before losing a European title fight - having suffered a terrible cut, which required a dozen stitches, in the second round.