“So I know it can happen to anybody at any time. And I don’t want it to happen to me. So I have to improve. I have to be the best I can be.”
In the fight against Blackwell, it was Eubank Sr. who apparently saw the warning signs even before the referee, and told his son to start aiming for the torso rather than the young man’s head.
The elder Eubank says his experience with Watson two decades earlier is “a scar within me” that has given him the insight to know when to hold back.
“This scar is what gives me the ability to steer this uncontrollable energy,” he says sagely, gesturing at Jr.
“His spirit wants to gallop, and I am staying on the back of him and I’m trying to steer him.”
Indeed, dressed in a pinstripe suit jacket, jodhpur-style jeans, and luminous pointed leather boots, Eubank Sr. appears to be the most fashionable jockey in town.
The 49-year-old’s flamboyant style — often pictured with a gentleman’s cane, behind the wheel of a monster truck, or wearing a fake monocle on reality TV show “I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!” — have made him a British household name far beyond the boxing ring.
When asked a question, Eubank Sr. has a tendency to recite poetry, the words flowing out of him like a preacher at his lectern.
I AM the great pretender” booms the elder Eubank when asked where he got his eye-catching boots from. “Nothing is original. So STEAL. Steal architecture, street signs, trees, clouds….Because originality is non-existent.”
Eubank Sr. requests that I call him by his nickname: English. Why English? “Because I ADORE England,” he says with a wide smile. “I’m a patriot to the core,” adds the man who was born in south London to Jamaican parents.
Above all, Eubank Sr. wants to be seen as “a man with manners,” he says. “My achievements should be secondary to that.”
“Manners first, good conduct, respecting the community at large — these are all principles that boxing teaches.”