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Daniel Dubois should watch greats like Muhammad Ali and Ken Buchanan to see why he is being dubbed a ‘quitter’

, Daniel Dubois should watch greats like Muhammad Ali and Ken Buchanan to see why he is being dubbed a ‘quitter’

DANIEL DUBOIS must be distraught that his boxing brothers added insult to his eye injury by branding him a quitter.

When Dubois dropped down on one knee, allowing the ref to count him out, he not only lost his British and Commonwealth heavyweight titles to Joe Joyce, but the respect of many fellow pros.

Daniel Dubois suffered a broken eye socket in his defeat to Joe Joyce
Ken Buchanan battled threw a severe eye injury to win on points against Ismael Laguna

Carl Frampton, David Haye, Dillian Whyte and Chris Eubank Jr are among those who regarded his tame surrender as a serious breach of the sport’s unwritten code of conduct.

Going back to the bare knuckle days, beaten champ­ions are expected to be carried out on their shields.

What makes Dubois’ accusers sound even more cruel is he is suffering from a fractured eye socket.

And, in hindsight, if he had continued it’s possible he could have lost his sight.

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But that still won’t appease Frampton and Co who firmly believe Daniel took the easy way out by metaphorically raising the white flag in that dramatic tenth round.

Every boxer is brave because they know they are risking their lives whenever they climb into the ring.

Yet there are those who are brave beyond the call of duty — the kind of heroes who have medals of valour pinned to their chests.

I will tell a story that will no doubt horrify modern fighters and fans. And it comes with a warning that it isn’t for the squeamish.

, Daniel Dubois should watch greats like Muhammad Ali and Ken Buchanan to see why he is being dubbed a ‘quitter’

At New York’s Madison Square Garden 49 years ago, I was covering the great Ken Buchanan’s world lightweight title defence against Ismael Laguna.

When the Scot returned to his corner at the end of the third round, his left eye was closed as tight as a bank vault’s door and had disappeared beneath a lump of purple flesh.

Eddie Thomas, Buchanan’s manager and trainer, realised he had to take drastic action with twelve rounds still to go. Thomas reached into his bag and pulled out a razor blade.

He slit the swelling and pressed his thumbs tightly against the wound, which released a fountain of blood.

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That gut-wrenching emergency surgery enabled Ken to have enough vision for a few more rounds until the eye inevitably closed again.

Yet Buchanan still had to fight on for five rounds, seeing out of one eye to slip Laguna’s best punches and win a unanimous points victory to retain his crown. Is it any wonder the Manhattan crowd loved him to bits.

Buchanan, fighting under such a crippling handicap, could easily have ended up permanently damaged against such a brilliant and dangerous opponent.

, Daniel Dubois should watch greats like Muhammad Ali and Ken Buchanan to see why he is being dubbed a ‘quitter’

SunSport’s Colin Hart reported on Buchanan’s fight in 1971

, Daniel Dubois should watch greats like Muhammad Ali and Ken Buchanan to see why he is being dubbed a ‘quitter’

Muhammad Ali suffered a broken jaw in his first fight with Ken Norton

However desperate his situation, taking a knee wouldn’t have entered Buchanan’s head. And he would have been furious if Thomas suggested he pulled him out in the heat of battle.

Dubois will be out of action for months and while healing I suggest he might occupy himself by watching old fight videos.

He should take a look at Carmen Basilio, carrying on half-blind for eight rounds before losing his world welter­­weight title to Sugar Ray Robinson — the greatest fighter of all-time.

Or Muhammad Ali going eleven rounds with a broken jaw before losing a points decision in his first fight with Ken Norton.

And then there’s the sight of Danny Williams, defending his British heavyweight title 20 years ago, in agony with a dislocated shoulder.

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He carried on with one hand for two rounds before knocking out Mark Potter with an uppercut.

Perhaps only then he will understand why his accusers have questioned his courage.

There’s no doubt there’s now a stigma attached to Dubois. It’s up to him to come back and ram his critics’ words down their throats.

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