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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 January, 2004, 09:41 GMT
Pickering's battle for respect
By Ed King

Esham Pickering

Esham Pickering has experienced his share of disappointment and frustration during a career that started in 1996.

In December 2000 the highly-rated super bantamweight stepped into the ring for a WBO title fight against Mauricio Martinez - and found himself on the canvas after just 72 seconds.

Two years later, he lost on points to Spain's Alejandro Monzon, a controversial decision that left the Newark-born fighter in a state of disbelief.

The manner of these losses was crushing, but Pickering and his trainer Brendan Ingle took them in their stride, and planned a comeback.

And now the 27-year-old is the British, Commonwealth and European champion, having battled past durable Italian Vincenzo Gigliotti to win the last title.

Pickering has come a long way.

When he started working with Brendan Ingle seven years ago, Naseem Hamed and Johnny Nelson were the main men.

Now he is.

Brendan Ingle (left) with Naseem Hamed
He is an inspiring guy to work with, and he his brilliant at his job
Pickering on Ingle (left)

And Ingle's record as a trainer speaks for itself.

"He is an inspiring guy to work with, and he his brilliant at his job," said Pickering.

"His best asset is his patience, but he also teaches you about discipline, life and social skills which are crucial in boxing."

Hitting your opponent is also quite important, and to that end Ingle has helped Pickering develop a stance that moves between orthodox and southpaw.

This switch-hitting style is a key part of Pickering's attack.

"If you can box two ways I think you have an advantage," he said.

Born: 07/08/1976
Height: 5ft 5
Reach: 68"
Trainer: Brendan Ingle
Record: W24 (8KO) L3

"But it's the way you do it - if you get hit switching then it's a disadvantage."

The victory over Gigliotti has opened up a number of avenues for Pickering, not least the prospect of a fight with Wayne McCullough later in the year.

"To be honest I just feel like I'm getting into it - I think I'll hit my prime when I'm 30-31," Pickering said.

"I do everything right and there is loads to come yet I promise you that.

"Even after my last three fights, which were all knockouts, nobody gave me the respect I think I deserve.

"Hopefully after this fight people will look at me a little more seriously."

Esham Pickering
"Brendan Ingle is a great trainer to work with"

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