A British boxer has died aged 31 after being rushed to hospital moments after he appeared in pain during a post-fight interview following victory in his bout.
Scott Westgarth had earned a win on points over ten hard fought rounds against Dec Spellman in an English title eliminator at The Dome, in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, on Saturday night.
The Newcastle fighter looked uncomfortable during a post-fight interview before he was taken ill after the bout and died in Sheffield’s Royal Hallamshire Hospital.
Boxer Scott Westgarth (centre) died following his points victory over Dec Spelman (left). He looked uncomfortable as he took part in this interview after the bout on Saturday
Westgarth (right) posted this image on social media of his weigh in with Spellman on Friday night. He wrote next to the image: ‘Just wanna thank everyone for helping prepare for this opportunity’
Images had surfaced on social media of the boxer grimacing during his interview after the fight, clearly in some discomfort.
After returning backstage, Westgarth was then taken to hospital and Curtis Woodhouse’s headline fight was swiftly cancelled.
His promoter, Stefy Bull, confirmed the tragic news on social media this morning. He said: ‘God bless Scott Westgarth.
‘To promote a boxing show and a young man doing a job he loves losing his life, I have no words.
‘RIP lad thoughts go out to your family and your team, it’s been the hardest few days I’ve had to endure. No idea what to do moving forward.’
Westgarth, who was trained in Sheffield by Glyn Rhodes and lives in Penistone but is originally from the North East, was knocked down on the ropes just before the bell of round 10.
Speaking to boxing news site Boxing Social, he said: ‘I will box anyone. I do it for the fun not because I think I am going to be world class fighter – I just do it purely for entertainment and I am just glad we could put on a show and keep everyone entertained.’
Westgarth, a former ski instructor, worked as a chef at Sheffield’s Royal Victoria Holiday Inn and his victory over Spelman meant he was one win away from becoming the English light heavyweight champion.
The world of boxing is in shock following the death of Newcastle fighter Westgarth (right)
He began boxing at the age of 24.
Ringside medics accompanied Westgarth to hospital which forced the cancellation of the headline bout.
Former Sheffield United captain and ex-British champion Woodhouse was due to face John Wayne Hibbert in a Commonwealth title eliminator but the fight was postponed.
Following Mr Bull’s tweet tributes flooded in on social media on Monday morning.
Promoter Eddie Hearn said: ‘Our thoughts and condolences with the family of Scott Westgarth, may he rest in peace.’
Mark Vater said: ‘RIP @scottwestgarth You were a cheeky chappy who was thought of very highly by your colleagues and friends! You will leave a big void. Thoughts are with your family! So sad.’
James Hope-Gill said: ‘So sorry to hear that Scott Westgarth has passed away. Devastating news.’
The 31-year-old even completed a post-match interview before he was taken to hospital
Westgarth, pictured in 2014, recorded a win, but was quickly rushed to hospital afterwards