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Like father like son, but not in the reflexes department: Harrison Sr

SCOTT HARRISON has had his fair share of vilification and being written off.

But he has confounded his critics to the extent that some have likened him to a latter-day Lazarus.

And one man has remained loyal to the ex-world featherweight champion from Cambuslang – his father and trainer, Peter.

Yet even Harrison Sr has been taken aback at how his son has risen to regain his status as a title contender by overcoming his well-documented problems.

Now, more than seven years after the last of his 10 world title bouts, Harrison is poised, at the age of 35, to challenge Liam Walsh for the Norfolk boxer's WBO European lightweight title at Wembley Arena on April 20.

No-one is more delighted than Peter Harrison, who has steadfastly stood by the country's statistically most successful world champion and remained resolute in his belief that his son has more often been a victim of circumstances than a desire to self-destruct.

He has at times perhaps been too quick to forgive his son's transgressions, so it would be easy to level the accusation that his unwavering support is born of family loyalty.

But he sounded sincere yesterday when he said: "Scott is a different person, a completely changed man. He appreciates being given this chance and I am personally delighted for him.

"To use that well-worn cliché, I am over the moon for Scott after watching him work so hard in training. He has turned the corner.There were occasions when I thought it maybe wasn't going to be, but strange things happen, especially in the boxing world, and Scott proved in his last two fights that he is still a powerful force.

"Scott is an exceptionally fit guy with a very strong mind. What he has been through over the last five or six years would have finished some people. There were times when he was down in the dumps, when nothing seemed to be going right for him, but through it all he kept training and believing.

"He surprised even me at times. But Scott has always wanted to go the extra mile and he is willing to spend an extra hour in the gym. He has been training three times a day.

"There is no doubt in his mind that he will beat Walsh and there is none in mine either. As far as Scott is concerned, Walsh is standing in his way to a world title shot and he is determined to remove him. I hope Walsh keeps talking Scott down, saying he is too old and that he will struggle, because the last person who did that, Wayne McCullough, didn't do himself any favours.

"Walsh is an undefeated champion and a good boxer, but we have been studying tapes of him to see the best way of beating him."

Harrison Sr added: "I boxed until the age of 33 and fitness wasn't a problem, it was my reflexes that slowed up. Scott is still very sharp and nobody is more determined. His strength and conditioning coach, George Fleming, is a tremendous motivator. George isn't a boxing man as such, but they are a very good combination."

SCOTT HARRISON has had his fair share of vilification and being written off. But he has confounded his critics to the extent that some have likened him to a latter-day Lazarus.

And one man has remained loyal to the ex-world featherweight champion from Cambuslang – his father and trainer, Peter.

Yet even Harrison Sr has been taken aback at how his son has risen to regain his status as a title contender by overcoming his well-documented problems.

Now, more than seven years after the last of his 10 world title bouts, Harrison is poised, at the age of 35, to challenge Liam Walsh for the Norfolk boxer's WBO European lightweight title at Wembley Arena on April 20.

No-one is more delighted than Peter Harrison, who has steadfastly stood by the country's statistically most successful world champion and remained resolute in his belief that his son has more often been a victim of circumstances than a desire to self-destruct.

He has at times perhaps been too quick to forgive his son's transgressions, so it would be easy to level the accusation that his unwavering support is born of family loyalty.

But he sounded sincere yesterday when he said: "Scott is a different person, a completely changed man. He appreciates being given this chance and I am personally delighted for him.

"To use that well-worn cliché, I am over the moon for Scott after watching him work so hard in training. He has turned the corner.There were occasions when I thought it maybe wasn't going to be, but strange things happen, especially in the boxing world, and Scott proved in his last two fights that he is still a powerful force.

"Scott is an exceptionally fit guy with a very strong mind. What he has been through over the last five or six years would have finished some people. There were times when he was down in the dumps, when nothing seemed to be going right for him, but through it all he kept training and believing.

"He surprised even me at times. But Scott has always wanted to go the extra mile and he is willing to spend an extra hour in the gym. He has been training three times a day.

"There is no doubt in his mind that he will beat Walsh and there is none in mine either. As far as Scott is concerned, Walsh is standing in his way to a world title shot and he is determined to remove him. I hope Walsh keeps talking Scott down, saying he is too old and that he will struggle, because the last person who did that, Wayne McCullough, didn't do himself any favours.

"Walsh is an undefeated champion and a good boxer, but we have been studying tapes of him to see the best way of beating him."

Harrison Sr added: "I boxed until the age of 33 and fitness wasn't a problem, it was my reflexes that slowed up. Scott is still very sharp and nobody is more determined. His strength and conditioning coach, George Fleming, is a tremendous motivator. George isn't a boxing man as such, but they are a very good combination."

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