Former British boxer Garry Delaney was jailed for life on Friday 28th July by an Old Bailey judge for the murder of 23 year old Paul Price. The judge Leonard Goldstone ruled that Delaney must serve a minimum of 11 years for what he described as a “Cowardly” attack.
The incident happened in October 2005 when Delaney, 35 years old, was at a disco in the County Hotel in Woodford, Essex. He was asked by a member of staff to help remove Price and his friend who had been refused entry for wearing jeans and trainers. The former boxer, who worked as an East London bouncer, then lifted Price’s friend up off his feet and carried him outside and dropped him into some nearby bushes.
When Price then asked “Why did you do that?”, Delaney punched him in the face and caused him to fall and crack his head on the ground. Mr Price died a short time later from his injuries. The judge had earlier rejected Delaney’s defence claims he only hit Price with “A half-hearted jab”, and went on to state that the boxer had “Behaved like a bully” and “Reacted like a coward.”
Delaney, who last boxed in in July 2005, had a mixed boxing career at weights ranging from light heavyweight and heavyweight. He turned professional in 1991 and went 20-0-0 (13), picking the Commonwealth light-heavyweight title along the way. He lost the title in 7 rounds to an inspired Noel Magee in 1995 after complaining he was weight-drained, and from then on fought in cruiserweight and heavyweight territory. In 1997 he challenged a peak Julius Francis for the British and Commonwealth heavyweight title at the Ulster Hall in Belfast and was overpowered in 6 rounds.
Following the Francis defeat, Delaney slimmed down and remained a contender on the British cruiserweight scene for a number of years. He lacked the speed and dynamic element needed to succeed on a international stage, but his well-rounded skills were enough to gain decisions over British campaigners such as Lee Swaby and Dominic Negus. His last good result was in extending South African hard man Sebastian Rothmann 12 rounds in Carnival City in 2002.
In the three years following that defeat, Delaney reverted to the role of journeyman, providing a name on the records of emerging forces such as Enzo Maccarinelli in 2004 (L TKO 8) and David Haye in 2005 (L TKO 3). His last fight was a 6 round points defeat by novice heavyweight Micky Steeds in July 2005.
What is certain now is that Delaney will not fight professionally again and will not leave prison until he is well into middle age. The British legal establishment take a very dim view of boxers using their fists to settle disputes and other boxer“s should take note. The tale of Garry Delaney is a prime example of how professional boxers should not act outside the boxing ring.