It’s time for Kell Brook to consider retirement, admits long-term Sheffield boxing gym ally

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Junior Witter thinks it is now time for Kell Brook to hang up the gloves, before he receives an even more devastating injury.

Witter, a world champion himself at light welterweight from 2006-8, was disturbed to see his comrade suffer a second broken eye socket in a TKO loss last weekend to Errol Spence Jr.

And while Brook, 31, has been massively unfortunate to suffer a similar facial injury to the one that he endured against Gennady Golovkin in September, Witter - who knows what it is like to lose a world title - insists it could have been much more severe.

“When you think of the serious injuries he’s had in his life, he’s fortunate they weren’t worse than they were” said the Lane Top boxer, who still has a license to compete, at the age of 43.

“The stabbing (Brook was attacked in Tenerife in 2014) could have been the end for him.

A chipped piece of bone (from either of the two eye socket injuries) could have blinded him.

“I don’t know anybody in boxing who has had both eye sockets broken. What’s worrying is that Golovkin is a hard puncher and maybe its not perhaps that surprising what damage he did.

“But Spence is not a single, heavy puncher, he doesn’t do it with one punch, it’s more pressure, yet he broke Kell’s socket. Does this suggests there is some kind of (bone) weakness?

“I say he’s been lucky that he hasn’t had worse injuries and I think he should retire because that luck has got to run out. I’m pretty sure his parents and his partner and others in his family are going to say: ‘Right you have had a great career, you’ve been world champion, you’ve done it.’

“He’s earned a ridiculous amount of money and is set for life.

A decision awaits Sheffields former IBF champion - should he seriously risk more facial wounds and operations?  Pic: Lawrence Lustig

A decision awaits Sheffields former IBF champion - should he seriously risk more facial wounds and operations? Pic: Lawrence Lustig

He’s a millionaire doesn’t need to fight and that’s the pressure he’ll be facing at home.

“There are loads of things he could do.

But he’s stubborn and I don’t think he will retire! I can see him coming back at light middleweight or middleweight” said Witter.

“Once he’s dealt with the damage there then he’ll have that decision to make - whether he is willing to risk all again. He’s going to have to wait until the eye is healed and see whether he thinks its worth continuing. But the longer he leaves it the harder it will be. After the operation, he is going to be sat on his hands for months.

Ricky Hatton and Junior Witter - a fight that never happened, possibly like Brook v Khan

Ricky Hatton and Junior Witter - a fight that never happened, possibly like Brook v Khan

“He has nothing to prove yet he’s getting stick (from other boxers and fans) for taking a knee against Spence. He knew the damage had been done, he could feel it.

“Boxing’s one thing, but he will also want to have his sight for the rest of his life.”

Much of the rest of 2017 will be a write-off for the 31 year old former IBF king.

“It takes a long time to organise a reasonable fight, these things aren’t done overnight and anyway it will be months before he’s ready to fight.

“If he comes back, I don’t see Amir Khan (contest) happening, he’s had the opportunity and didn’t want it.”

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