It was the end of a long journey for Kid Galahad when he finally became a world champion in August. But in his moment of victory, the 31-year-old thought about the man who probably did more than anything to get him there – Brendan Ingle. 

Ingle, who died in 2018, is a Sheffield boxing legend. Like many before him, from Naseem Hamed to Johnny Nelson to Kell Brook, Galahad, whose real name is Bari Awad, has a big debt to Ingle. In Galahad’s case, as well as teaching him to box, giving his life some purpose, he even had Ingle to thank for his ring name – taken from an old Elvis Presley film. 

“I learnt so much from Brendan, in life, not just boxing,” said Galahad, whose real name is Bari Awad. “I’m lucky to have had a trainer like him. If it wasn’t for Brendan, everything I have got and everything I am going to get, I wouldn’t have had. 

“He installed everything in you – going to bed early, getting up early, when you go to the gym, making sure you are switched on, doing your footwork hitting the heavy bag. I still stick by the system he installed in me and now I’ve got Dominic and John (Ingle’s sons) who remind me if I have forgotten something. 

“I don’t think Junior Witter, Kell Brook, Ryan Rhodes, Johnny Nelson, Herol “Bomber” Graham, all these champions, if it wasn’t for Brendan installing everything in them, I don’t think any of us would have got to this point. 

“Sometimes I am in the ring and things happen and it is things that Brendan taught me that I turn to, old school rules, little tricks. I don’t see other trainers doing that anymore, teaching kids the harsh reality of boxing.  

“But it was about living the life too. When I was a kid and I had a packed of crisps, when I finished, I just used to chuck it away. But if Brendan saw you do that he would kick off at you ‘that’s no good, you shouldn’t be littering’. And he would take you round, picking up litter and you would realise ‘it’s bad with all this litter’. Then you stop doing it. 

“I don’t think anyone drank in front of Brendan. The people who drank did it sneakily, they would never let Brendan see or find out about it, because if he knew, Brendan would take it personally. Because he has given you everything, he expected you to give everything.” 

Tonight, he makes the first defense of the IBF featherweight title at the Utilita Arena, Sheffield, against Kiko Martinez. The Spaniard is the man Carl Frampton beat to first become a world champion back in 2014. That he is trying to become a two-weight world champion at 35 is of great credit to him. 

Martinez has been around for years, but Galahad has known about him for longer than most, after another former Ingle gym-mate, Esham Pickering, was in line to fight him 14 years ago. 

Someone who did get in touch after he won the title was Hamed, who was the person who first told him to go to Ingle. 

“He rang me up after the fight and he said ‘you’ve got my old IBF title’ and I said ‘yep’ and then we just started laughing,” Galahad said. 

Ron Lewis is a senior writer for BoxingScene. He was Boxing Correspondent for The Times, where he worked from 2001-2019 - covering four Olympic Games and numerous world title fights across the globe. He has written about boxing for a wide variety of publications worldwide since the 1980s.