dad fights for son

NOBLE: Former junior featherweight boxer Anton 'The Irish Terror' Gilmore.
NOBLE: Former junior featherweight boxer Anton 'The Irish Terror' Gilmore.

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Anton "The Irish Terror" Gilmore has come out of retirement to fight for his sick son, Aidan .

Gilmore , who campaigned in the junior featherweight division, will dust off the cobwebs against Thompson Mokwana on July 29.

He has dedicated their six-rounder, which will be contested in the junior lightweight division, to his son who suffers from tuberous sclerosis.

He has 14 tumours on his brain and 10 tumours on his heart.

Gilmore said according to statistics, one in 8000 children contract the disease.

"He is a major force behind my coming back. I have also wanted to go on and see if I still have what it takes," said this colourful and well-known personality, who is also an entertaining motivational speaker.

Aidan turns one on August 1, and his doting dad is optimistic that he will be as normal as any other person.

"I've got an incredible wife who is very supportive," said Gilmore, 37.

He has not fought since March 22 1997, when he was outpointed by Cassius "Shy Guy" Baloyi for the World Boxing Union (WBU) junior featherweight belt at Wembley Arena, south of Johannesburg.

That was Gilmore's second failed coup.

He had previously been defeated by American Max Gomez in Denver in The US for the same WBU belt in March 1996.

Gilmore retired after his defeat to Baloyi with an impressive fight record of 21 wins (6 KOs) and only two defeats.

He has been training aspiring and up-and-coming boxers for eight years at his Box Office ProAm gym in the south of Johannesburg.

Gilmore's fight against this young, skilful and hard-hitting but relatively inexperienced Mokwana will be the main supporting bout to the SA heavyweight title eliminator between Basil "No Apologies" Ray and Bully "Bulldozer" Muravha.

These fights and four others will be promoted by the Dingaan Thobela - Knockout Boxing Promotions (DTKBP) at the Theatre of Marcellus at Emperors Palace.

It will be a box-and-dine and tables of 10 will sell for R3500.

An auction of boxing memorabilia will also be held and the plan is to raise funds for Aidan Anton's foundation.

But the always generous Gilmore said: "The money will go to other children who have the same condition.

"We are fortunate that the we can still survive on our own. There are children out there who are not that lucky.

"So we are trying to help them."