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  Tuesday, 11 July, 2000, 02:03 GMT 03:03 UK
Lewis set to call it a day
Lennox Lewis
Lennox Lewis: "This will be my last fight in England"
World heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis has admitted that he will retire from the sport next year, as he prepares for his fight with South African Frans Botha next weekend.

The 34-year-old Briton, who fights at the London Arena on Saturday, also admitted during preparations for his title defence that this will be be his final contest on English soil.

Lewis said: "I was just thinking of that in the dressing-room that I believe it is going to be my last fight in England.

"By next year I should be retired and off doing other things. It sounds like I'm making my retirement speech already but it's been a great career.


By next year I should be retired and off doing other things
Lennox Lewis
"However, it is great to give the British fans an opportunity to see me instead of asking them to fly across the Atlantic. But before anything else I'm just aiming to to knock Frans Botha out."

His promoter Panos Eliades backed up Lewis' claims, saying: "It is definitely Lennox's last fight in England. This one is the last time people are going to see Lennox.

"He's going to be retiring soon. He's not going to be around much longer."

Four fights

Eliades added that Lewis would probably have a maximum of four more fights before ending his career.

"He's not going to do an Evander Holyfield. He's not going to carry on forever.

"We're running out of opponents. The problem is, there's not enough good opponents out there to keep him tested and he gets a bit complacent and a bit bored."

Lewis will defend his World Boxing Council and International Boxing Federation belts, in the country of his birth for the first time in nearly six years.

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Lennox Lewis
"By next year I should be retired. It's been a great career"
See also:

04 Jul 00 | Sport
27 Jun 00 | Lewis in London
28 Jun 00 | Other Sports
10 Jul 00 | Other Sports
07 Jul 00 | Lewis in London
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