Former Olympian and one of Wales' most decorated amateur boxers, Andrew Selby (13-1, 7KOs), has announced his retirement from professional boxing aged 31.
'Superstar' Selby won four successive British flyweight titles, countless Welsh titles, silver and bronze medals at the World Championships and twice won European Championship gold as an amateur.
Born on Christmas Day in 1988, the younger brother of former world champion Lee Selby turned pro in 2015 and won 13 of 14 contests.
Trained by Tony Borg and managed by Chris Sanigar, Andrew won the British flyweight title in just his fifth fight; he then added the IBF Inter-Continental flyweight title in bout no.7, and finally the WBC International flyweight strap in fight eight.
"Just to let everyone know I've given up the boxing game.. thank you for the fans.. sponsors," he wrote briefly.
Barry-based Selby suffered a first career defeat as a professional when he was stopped in the fifth round by hard-hitting Julio Cesar Martinez in Mexico City in March 2019, with the Mexican going on to win the WBC world flyweight title and successfully defending it against fellow Welshman Jay Harris in February this year.
In his last fight in September 2019, he survived two knockdowns - round one and six - to overcome Tanzanian boxing champion Fadhili Majiha (24-13-4) in Newcastle over eight rounds. It was his second fight in the same month having knocked out Worawatchai Boonjan (14-22-2) at Caesars Palace in Dubai two weeks earler on Friday 13th.
It was in the post-fight interview when he revealed his desperate struggles with depression following the loss of his mum, who died unexpectedly in 2017.
“It was a sudden death and unexpected, and that’s what really broke me. It was the worst point in my life. She was my best friend and I could tell her anything. She’d always say I would be a world champion.
“When my mum passed away the first thing I did was pick up a bottle and drank and drank. I hid myself away and didn’t want to speak to anyone. I self-harmed and did a lot of things I’m not proud of.
“I went to counselling and the feeling of opening up is a relief. The pain is always there but it makes you happier that someone understands you. When I lost my mother I didn’t see a future, but now I’m grateful for going and speaking to people.
“I’ve passed all of the bad stuff and there’s no going back. I’m only going up and up and I’m going to get that world title belt. I’ve had to go through the bad to see the light.
“If you’re grieving or going through depression or anything, speak to people. Don’t hold it inside, seek help.”
BBN would like to wish Andrew health and happiness in retirement.