Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

After a fourteen-year career and 32 professional fights, former featherweight champion Lee Selby announced his retirement from boxing at the age of 35.

Selby was defeated by Gustavo Lemos in Buenos Aires just ten days ago, suffering three knockdowns and a fifth-round TKO loss.

On Tuesday, the British boxer issued a lengthy statement declaring his retirement from the sport.

Selby, a Welsh fighter, has a career record of 28 victories (9 KOs) and four losses.

Selby won the IBF 126-pound title by technical decision over Evgeny Gradovich in 2015, and he held it until his split decision loss to Josh Warrington in 2018.

Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

Selby moved up to lightweight soon after and appeared to never be the same after competing at larger weights, losing three of his final five fights. In 2019, he won a spirited majority decision against former world champion Ricky Burns.

In an IBF eliminator bout in 2020, Selby lost a split decision against George Kambosos Jr., with the winner going on to face then-unified lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez Jr. Kambosos, of course, shocked Lopez late last year by defeating him.

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Selby was a well-known figure in British boxing circles, having fought in 30 of his 32 bouts there. He only fought once in the United States, winning a unanimous decision over former world champion Fernando Montiel in the main event of a card in Glendale, Arizona in 2015, when defending his IBF championship for the first time.

“I know it’s time for me to hang up the gloves after 27 years as an amateur and professional boxer.”

“Growing up on a council estate in Barry, South Wales, you learn about struggle early on.” Growing up in poverty takes its toll on many young people, but boxing saved me more than I could have imagined.

Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

“I will be eternally grateful to my mother and father for taking me and my brothers to Rhoose Amateur Boxing Club and Craig Smyth for his unwavering support.”

In the amateurs, I had roughly 90 bouts, but it was my brother Andrew who was the major attraction for the Selby family.

“My professional career began with little fanfare at the Newport Centre’s tiny hall shows; it humbled me to start at the bottom with fewer purses and made it all the sweeter for my team and me as we rose to the top despite all odds.”

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I’m glad that the team I started with was the same one I finished with, and I’m grateful for the 14-year professional adventure we shared, with all of its highs and lows.

Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

Chris and Jamie Sanigar, my management team, the long hours in the gym with my trainer Tony Borg, and veteran cornerbacks Billy Reynolds and Nigel Christian We may all be proud of ourselves for a job well done.

“I had to do things the hard way, winning every title imaginable along the road, including the Welsh, Celtic, British, Commonwealth, European, and IBF World Titles.” I won the Lonsdale belt outright five times and successfully defended my world title. Twenty-two of my 32 professional fights were either title battles or twelve-round fights.

I am honored to be the 12th Welshman to win a world title, and my name will now be permanently associated with those legendary boxers.

When I reflect on my career, I see that I have accomplished what I set out to do.

“I made an effort to be a good champion and treat everyone with dignity.” In order to achieve my goals, I have always exhibited the value of hard effort and sacrifice. I’ve had some incredible successes, but I’ve also learned crucial lessons through defeat that have helped me become the guy I am today.

Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

I hope that my career can serve as an example to those boxers who are just starting out on modest stages that their goals can come true.

As the money began to flow in, I’m grateful that my manager instilled in me the value of the investment, and we always followed the adage “buy houses, not Bentleys.”

Trust me, there’s no harder-earned money than a boxer’s purse, and it disappears as quickly as it appears, so spends it wisely!

“I’d like to express my gratitude to my family in particular. To my mother Frankie, for all of her efforts, and I’m grateful she got to witness me become a world champion before she passed away in 2017.

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My brother Michael, who died after my second pro fight, was constantly looking down on me because I had his nickname “Slinky” on my battle shorts, and I knew he was always gazing down on me.

To my father, Lee Selby Snr, who was the one who originally encouraged me to put on the gloves and was there for me at every training camp. Andrew, my older brother, always encouraged me to strive to be as good as him in the gym.

My girlfriend, Meggie, and our three children for their love and sacrifice while I pursued my aspirations in order to provide a better future for us all.

Former Featherweight Champion Lee Selby Retires at 35

“A special thanks to Guy Sillett for all of his strength and conditioning work during my career, as well as Eryk Jodlowski’s help in recent years.” Thank you to everyone at St Joseph’s Boxing Club and Bristol Boxing Gym for your efforts.

Thanks to my sponsors, Nina Estate Agents in Barry, Sharyn Donnachie at Capital Cabs, Health Hut in Newport, and Everlast, who have always been there for me throughout my career.

“I want to express my gratitude to all of my followers for their unwavering support over the years.

“I leave the ring without regrets, happy, healthy, and financially secure for my family.” Boxing has been my life, and I am confident that I will continue to participate in the sport in the future as I strive to achieve new goals.