Huddersfield professional boxer Charlie Martin-Stuart has been compared to a young Ricky Hatton, with Charlie dreaming of making it all the way to the top, according to coach Dennis Doyle.
Charlie, 26, of Birchencliffe, known as the ‘Huddersfield Hitman’, started boxing at the age of 17 at Gladiators Boxing Academy in Huddersfield. His father had sent him there to learn how to defend himself and to keep him off the streets.
At first coach Doyle, who runs the Turnbridge Mill club, wasn’t knocked over by Charlie’s ability – but there was something about him that quickly came to the fore.
Doyle said: “He wasn’t the most talented young man to enter the gym but his attitude to learning and dedication was A grade and hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.
“What we liked about him was his heart and the fact he wanted to improve all the time. He started off losing most of his bouts but always wanted to know how he could improve on each performance and always asked us to get him back into the next fight as soon as possible.”
Doyle believes Charlie can make it to the very top and added: “I honestly believe this kid can go as far as he wants. He has been winning fights comfortably and I have no doubt he can win a world title.
“His dream is to one day win a world title and give his little girl Willow a dream start in life.”
Growing up on a council estate in Linthwaite, Charlie found things tough as a youngster, according to Doyle.
“Charlie came to us because I think he was struggling at school with bullying and so on. Charlie is a great kid who just wants to do his best and that’s why we like him and believe in him. When he first came to us he used to just go out swinging and I think there was some pent up anger inside. We taught him how to control that and tidied up his style.”
This good attitude towards training and learning soon paid off for Charlie as he began to pick up accolades and started to win fights.
Doyle said: “His good attitude started to work for him. He got to the MTK Global Box Cup Final held in Scotland, it is one of the biggest competitions in the world. He won his first two fights and lost in the final to a kid from Spain. He came away with a silver medal which was a great achievement.”
Charlie then entered into the Yorkshire senior elite belt which is the highest level you can reach as an amateur. Charlie won that and has successfully defended it twice.
Charlie had won 10 bouts in a row and was ready for his next challenge. However the world was then plunged into a worldwide pandemic and so all boxing competitions were stopped.
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At the age of 23 and with all boxing stopped, Charlie’s trainers Dennis and his son Brandon Doyle, decided to turn professional. Charlie also turned professional.
As Charlie turned professional a lot of the people in his community backed him to succeed.
Doyle said: “We went to a fight in Sheffield that was televised and Charlie walked out to a song called ‘Hit Man’ which was written by a local guy called Jordan Wilson. It’s a rap tune but very Rocky themed and so Charlie has now been given the nickname the Huddersfield Hitman. Charlie won the fight in Sheffield and got likened to the former great boxer Ricky Hatton.”
Dennis and Brandon have managed to get Charlie a top manager in Kevin Maree who works with boxing promotion heavyweights Frank Warren and Eddie Hearn. Charlie has signed a three-year contract with Maree and remains an unbeaten prospect hoping to box again in May this year.
Doyle explained the hard work Charlie goes through on a daily basis.
He said: “On a typical day Charlie wakes at 5am goes on a five-mile run and then has breakfast. After finishing work its straight to the gym where he trains until around 9pm. He does this five days a week, then spars on a Saturday sometimes in Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield or Bolton.”
Charlie has a 3-0 unbeaten record at the minute with his last fight being against Sultan Ahmed back in March at the Colne Municipal Hall in Lancashire.
On that fight Doyle said: “It was a very fast start from Charlie, which saw him catching his opponent with body shots, uppercuts and hooks. He totally outclassed his opponent and as he previously predicted stopping his opponent after only two minutes and 50 seconds of the first round.”
Charlie is scheduled to fight again in May although when, where and against who is yet to be decided. However, what’s certain is that the Huddersfield Hitman will come out fighting.