SHEFFIELD boxing great Ryan Rhodes has hung up his gloves and now they are going under the hammer – along with other memorabilia items at his testimonial dinner, writes Graham Walker.
Tomorrow night’s event at the Cutler’s Hall, featuring a star-studded line up including Ricky Hatton and Carl Froch, is completely sold out.
But fans can still get the chance to own a bit of his boxing history.
Ryan and event organiser Mick Lawless today invited fight fans to make advanced bids before noon tomorrow (Sat, Dec 1, 2012).
All items have a reserve starting price of £300 - though collectors may pay thousands for some of the unique, framed, match worn memorabilia which is up for grabs.
Full list below. Bidderss to call 07780 726454 or email mike2803@hotmail,co.uk.
VIDEO: Press the play button to watch our special report, showing some of the many items up for auction.
Fans can bid for the shorts Ryan wore when he beat Jamie Moore to win the European title in a fight voted 2009 fight of the year.
Then there’s the gloves he wore against Paul Silky Jones in his first British Light Middleweight title bout.
Fans can also bid for other boxing gems, including a Mike Tyson encased signed glove, Kell Brook’s signed boots - worn in his fight with Matthew Hatton - plus memorabilia autographed by Smokin’ Joe Frazier, IBF Super Middleweight champ Carl Froch and Ricky Hatton.
Doncaster Rovers have also donated the use of the director’s box for a match, for up to 10 people.
Proceeds from the testimonial will help Ryan to launch his future dreams and there’s also a charity element..
Ryan, who is applying for his corner’s licence to help train other champs and plans more TV pundit work, is also working for Promotional Office Warehouse. He explained: “I’m having the testimonial dinner to celebrate the fantastic career I’ve had. There’s a great top table.
“All my family will be there and my children are dancing. I’m overwhelmed and it’s going to be very emotional and I can guarantee there will be tears.
“Hundreds of people are coming and it sold out in days - thousands wanted to be there.
“I’m sorry not everyone could get a ticket, but I’m giving those who can’t be there the chance to still own part of my career history, by giving them an opportunity to bid for the memorabilia.
“It’s a lot of fight worn stuff, including my shorts and gloves. The only stuff I would nevcer part with are my belts and my WBC medal.”
Two original paintings, by Ben Mosley, will be auctioned for charity. One shows Ryan in action and the other is of four champs, Ricky Hatton, Naseem Hamed, Carl Froch and Johnny Nelson, who have all agreed to sign it.
Money raised from the paintings will go to Weston Park Cancer Charity Hospital and the Alexander Strong Fight Against Cancer - to pay for urgent cancer treatment abroad for an eight year old Epworth boy, who is fighting neuroblastoma.
Testimonial organiser Mick said: “People assume every boxer is a millionaire. Let me assure you that’s not the case. Yes, Ryan has been a full time professional boxer. But at the age of 36 he’s not in a position to stop working. So a lot of Saturday night is about giving him a foundion to invest in his future.
“We’ve always supported local charities though, so we’re also helping little Alex, who needs urgent treatment the NHS can’t provide here in the UK. He’s got to go to Germany, at a cost in excesss of £90,000. Ryan wants to help.”
* All items, including the paintings, have a starting price of £300 each. To bid for items, listed in full below, call 07780 726454 or email mike2803@hotmail,co.uk before noon tomorrow, December 1, 2012.
Lot 1: Fight worn boxing gloves Ryan Rhodes v Paul Silky Jones. Ryan’s first British Light Middleweight title.
Lot 2: Fight worn boxing gloves Ryan Rhodes v Gary Woolcombe. Ryan’s second victory to secure the British Light Middleweight title.
Lot 3: Fight worn boxing shorts Ryan Rhodes v Gary Woolcombe. Ryan’s second victory to secure the British Light Middleweight title.
Lot 4: Fight worn boxing shorts Ryan Rhodes v Jamie Moore. Fight of the Year 2009. Ryan secures the European title.
Lot 5: Fight won boxing shorts Ryan Rhodes v Jamie Coyle. Defence of British Light Middleweight title.
Lot 6: Signed boxing glove, presented to Ryan by Mike Tyson. A photograph of Mike handing the item to Ryan is included as authenticity.
Lot 7: Signed boxing boots worn by Kell Brook in his fight against Matthew Hatton.
Lot 8: Signed and framed boxing glove from our current IBF Super Middleweight Champion of the World, Carl “The Cobra” Froch.
Lot 9: Ricky Hatton donated item.
Lot 10: A superb signed and framed glove from the legendary Smokin Joe Frazier donated by the World Boxing Council, and framed with a replica of Joe’s WBC Medal.
There are only 50 of these in existence. Full certificate of authenticity included. This is a chance to own a fantastic item from one of the greats of World boxing, sadly no longer with us.
Lot 11: Director’s box at Doncaster Rovers for 10 occupants
** Bids for the two paintings, with proceeds to the charities, also have a starting price reserve of £300.