The Golden Age of Academic Pugilism
Dorset Boxing News, the go-to publication for anyone interested in the world of West Country pugilism, celebrates its 40th year of publication this month with a special edition devoted to the Dorset fight scene of four decades ago.
Great news all round, this will be especially welcomed by those who remember the legendary contest in July 1977 between East Dorset Amateur Champion Professor Brian Thrupiece and West Dorset challenger (and Threadsdale Belt holder) Arthur "Kidd" Glove who boxed out of Minterne Magna. The so called Thrilla in da Villa (Long Bredy) - from which the Professor emerged as the undisputed champion - was the first fight to unify all the major Dorset titles.
Dorset Boxing News devotes more than a page to this historic meeting in which Professor Thrupiece famously triumphed in the Third Round without landing a punch. "He simply mesmerised his opponent by chanting the Thrupiece Tables", DBN Features Editor, Dorset Boxing Historian and former North East Dorset Radio Carpenter, Harry Commentary writes. "In the end the Kidd just gave up: he couldn't take any more and his corner threw in the towel before their man became any more brain damaged." Those present agree it was a masterful display by "The Prof" who went on to defend his title four times before retiring undefeated. "No-one could get close", continues Commentary, "He'd dance around the ring with a fixed expression but hardly any agility just mumbling those formulae through his gum shield and somehow his opponents simply lost the will to fight: it was an early form of psychological warfare and unbelievably tedious to watch".
Former stringbonefellows hostess and ring girl Randy Ring-Girl recalls the lack of excitement vividly: "it was just amazingly unexciting" she recalls, "we couldn't wait to get laid (surely "paid" [ed]) and get home".
The August edition of Dorset Boxing News is available from all good newsagents including branches of Edna's "Dorset's Favourite Convenience Store". A subscription service is available but not selling well.
The 40th Anniversary Edition of Dorset Boxing News celebrates the Golden Age of Dorset Pugilism: an era when one man's mind triumphed over every other matter.