The team at Telum were incredibly inspired by the courageous effort of our Newcastle based worker, Mathew Norris, to step into the ring recently and throw fists in the name of charity. Fighting for the charity Fight for Connar – Mat rose to the occasion in spectacular fashion and lived to share some of his experience with us…
Mathew, congratulations mate on the recent boxing fight which was the end of an incredible journey in terms of preparation, purpose and passion. Firstly, what made you decide to step up to a challenge like this?
I wanted to challenge myself. I saw a link about Corporate Fighters on Facebook and found a 10-week challenge that included a boxing match experience, coaching from professional fighters and a chance to raise money for charity. As I looked into it further, I became surer that this is what I wanted and needed to do. I really wanted to challenge myself and there was only one charity that came to my mind – Fight for Connar.
Have you had any boxing experience before?
I have never done boxing before! In fact quite the opposite. I’m a student studying Wing Chun Kung Fu and have been for two years now. It is a completely different style of art where we relax our muscles and not switch them on, where in boxing you need to. I found the transition really hard but ultimately rewarding.
Unfortunately, last year my instructor tragically lost his daughter to a brain tumour at the young age of 13. Fight for Connar who are a not for profit charity (that help terminally ill kids and their families) really went above and beyond to help my instructor and his family out. They renovated their entire home from wheelchair access ramps to back decking and all the much-needed things that would support the family during this tough time. Monica, the Director and Founder of Fight for Connar, is a godsend to these kids and families in just the most terrible of circumstances.
So I was just really honoured and proud to be a part of helping the charity and bringing some awareness to the good work they do. Besides – I didn’t really mind getting punched in the face for a few rounds to help sick kids because if you ask me – they are the real fighters in this story!!
What was the highlight of the experience and how did the fight go?
Where to begin! From the moment I walked into Steel City Boxing in Newcastle, my journey began. Meeting everyone and training for 10 weeks, was an amazing experience that I will not soon forget. I swear I am still feeling the intense training on my body ha!
About a week out from the fight night I broke my nose in a training session and was really worried about how close the fight was and if they would let me fight at all. The trainers looked after me though and by fight night I was feeling good and ready to go all out.
When that first bell rung, well, we both came out swinging. Punch for punch. Blow for blow. And then it seemed like out of nowhere, bam! my opponent tagged me straight on my nose. I knew it was broken even worse than before. Despite the hit I didn’t want to give up, so with a broken nose I kept going. With Fight for Connar and my instructor’s family serving as motivation – giving up just wasn’t an option. I was really happy with how I applied all the boxing skills I had learned and as much as I know I did myself and my family and friends proud, unfortunately my opponent was the better fighter on the night and won by points.
If anyone reading this would like to support your charity, how can they do this?
Contact Monica the Director and Founder of Fight for Connar and follow them on facebook. They really need and deserve the community’s support. If you would like to do boxing and have your own fight experience, follow Corporate Fighters on Facebook and tell them I sent you! And make sure Fight for Connor is your charity – I’d love if more people would join me in helpings these brave kids – the bell has only just rung for them and they’ve got a lot more rounds to give but can’t do it alone.
You can find out more about the charity ‘Fight for Connor’ at https://www.facebook.com/fightforconnar/
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