Audley Harrison's retirement U-turn

21/05/2013 20:31

Audley Harrison (31-7) has confirmed his return to professional boxing - just 20 days after announcing his retirement.

The 2000 Olympic super heavyweight gold medalist decided to finally hang up his gloves after a first round knockout defeat inside 70 seconds to Deontay Wilder last month.

But Harrison, 41, is returning to the ring after the birth of his son and having taken the advice of Lennox Lewis and David Haye.

"When I made the tough decision to walk away from boxing, I knew it was not going to be easy," said Harrison.

"As the days passed, I knew I would not be able to live with the decision. I wrestled with it for a few weeks, and spoke to everyone from the boxing board, to Lennox Lewis, to David Haye, my dad, wife and many others...ultimately seeing my son born crystallised my decision.

There's is no way I am going to tell my son, I gave up because I didn't want to climb the mountain again, when I'm now in the best shape of my career, doing things I haven't done for years, and back in love with the sport. How can I retire, when I know I have another shot in me? People who worry I may get hurt, I thank you for your concerns. We live in a free society and my desire for freedom and autonomy is my universal right.

We all saw how the fight ended, which was not right. I can't walk away with that performance. If I do, it would haunt me untilI'm old and grey.

Don't know where, but see you in a ring real soon."

Harrison could now step in to face Dereck Chisora on June 15. Chisora was due to meet Wilder, which was announced by promoter Frank Warren for that summer date, but the American's current legal troubles in the US have thrown the fight into doubt.