Australian middleweight contender Michael Zerafa is in agony in the aftermath of the tragic sparring accident which led to the death of close friend Dwight Ritchie.
As BoxingScene.com previously reported, Ritchie was having a sparring session with Zerafa on Saturday, as both boxers had scheduled fights next month. Zerafa is training for his rematch with former welterweight champion Jeff Horn.
According to sources, Ritchie was hit with a body shot, and he walked back to his corner and collapsed. They were unable to revive him.
Ritchie, only 27-years-old, leaves behind a wife and three children.
Zerafa's rematch with Horn takes place on December 18 and there is some speculation on whether or not the fight will take place as planned.
"There are simply no words to describe how I am feeling right now," Zerafa stated to Exclusive Insight. "Dwight was one of the most humble people I have ever met.
"We had known each other since we were teenagers, when we were just starting out in the sport. And for the past 10 years, Dwight and I had been supporting each other inside and outside of the ring.
"There had always been a professional and mutual respect between us. (Saturday) was an absolute tragedy, and as tough as it is right now for myself, I can only imagine how difficult the past 24 hours has been for Dwight’s family.
"My heart bleeds for his three children and his beautiful partner. I have spoken to the family and given my deepest condolences. The boxing community has lost a truly great person and I have lost a mate."