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Five-time title challenger Martin Murray retires at 38

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Murray fell to Billy Joe Saudners in a bid for the WBO super middleweight title earlier this month

MTK Fight Night Photo by Lewis Storey/Getty Images

After one final, unsuccessful bid at a world title earlier this month, 38-year-old veteran Martin Murray has announced his retirement from the sport of boxing.

“Now the dust has settled after my fight I’d just like to say a few things. I’d like to start by saying well done to Billy Joe Saunders and his team. He’s a world class talent and the better boxer won on the night – and I sincerely wish him all the best in future.

“I want to say a big thanks to my wife Gemma, our three children and our family and friends for their love and support. To Jamie Moore, Nigel Travis, MTK Global and Andrew Mikhail for all of their hard work – and to the legendary Oliver Harrison for everything he did for me over the years.

“After having a talk with Gem, my family and close friends I’ve decided to hang my gloves up and call it a day. It wasn’t the fairytale ending that I’d dreamed of but I’d like to think that I retire with a bit of respect and my health, which is the most important thing.

“When I turned professional I wanted to hang them up without any regrets and taking all opportunities that were put my way and I did just that. I went around the world and fought the best – and pushed them all the way too so I’m happy and proud of what I achieved.

“I also wanted to be able to say that all the hard work and sacrifices have been worth it and they have. I’m now looking forward to the next chapter of my life and spending it with my beautiful wife Gemma, our three beautiful children Archie, Amelia and Aisla – and our amazing family and friends.

“Over the years I’ve met some amazing people and our friendships have gone beyond boxing so I finish my career in a far better position then when I started it. I’m happy that my career is over now but definitely going to stay in the game in some way and will look into maybe starting my own stable of fighters in the future.

“Before I finish off I’d just like to say that boxing has took me to places and given me experiences that I could of only dreamed of. I hope that I’m an example of what you can achieve with hard work and proof that you can always turn your life around if you truly want to.

“Lastly, to everyone who has ever helped or supported me throughout my career and to the sport of boxing. It’s been some journey.”

St Helens’ Murray started his pro career in 2007, amassing a 23-0 record over the span of four years before battling WBA middleweight champ Felix Sturm to a controversial draw. Two more wins set up a crack at fading WBC champ Sergio Martinez, whom Murray dropped en route to a narrow decision defeat in the former’s native Argentina. This pattern continued for some time; he would later get battered by Gennadiy Golovkin in his first and last stoppage loss, move up to 168 and fall just short against Arthur Abraham, struggle with the dangerous George Groves, miss out on the WBC “silver” belt after getting jobbed against Hassan N’Dam, and finally drop a wide decision to Billy Joe Saunders.

He ends his career 39-6-1 (17 KO)

Despite never quite securing a true title, Murray gave some very solid fighters everything they could handle. It’s a career to be proud of, and we wish Murray the best in his future endeavors.