GET FIGHTING FIT mentor and trainer Tony Wilson is an outright Lonsdale Belt-holder and competitor in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.
He was born in Wolverhampton, and took up boxing in the footsteps of his big brother Neville. ( right picture )
Tony with Alan Rickhuss
Tony with Roy Harris
He joined the Bilston Golden Gloves club, run by Alan Rickhuss and Roy Harris, and in his first 16 fights knocked out 15 opponents within two rounds
Tony went on to win the NABC championship in a thrilling final in 1978 at the Piccadilly Hotel, Manchester, then transferred to Wolverhampton Amateur Boxing Club and came under the lifelong influence of trainer Ray Green, from Tipton, a former Army physical training instructor.
Ray hugely improved Tony's physical fitness, mental strength and fighting skills, so that he won two ABA titles, making his selection for Los Angeles 1984 a formality.
"That was my ultimate, not to win it, just to complete," says Tony.
" Everyone pictures being a champion, but just going to the Olympics was it for me, and when I got on the plane to go over I was crying. It was my boyhood dream come true."
It ended in disappointment after the judges' verdict that he had won his quarter final bout was reversed by a special panel, robbing him of at least a bronze medal.
Tony and his brother Neville
On his return home he called a halt to an amateur career of 86 fights and 71 wins (40 by knockout) by signing with Britain's then No.1 manager and promoter Terry Lawless, joining a stable of stars including Maurice Hope, Jim Watt, Charlie Magri, Frank Bruno and Lloyd Honeygan. Like all of them, Tony soon became a star, winning the vacant British Light-Heavyweight title in 1987, stopping Blain Logsdon in six rounds in only his 13th fight.
When Lawless and his long-time trainer Jimmy Tibbs split, Tony who had not fought as often as he liked in the Lawless stable, went with Tibbs.
Two successful title defences against his Olympics captain and friend Brian Schumacher followed, Tony stopping the Liverpudlian in the sixth and second rounds, but in a shock reversal in his next defence, Tony was stopped in two rounds by Tom Collins.
He tried to restart his career in America, but called it a day with a career record of 29 fights, 20 wins.
His most controversial fight took place in 1989, in Southampton, when his tiny mother Minna leaped into the ring and attacked his opponent, Steve McCarthy, with her shoe.
The incident caused a riot after McCarthy, who was bleeding slightly from the head, refused to continue, and the win was awarded to Tony.
What was not so well-known is that throughout the night the entire Wilson family had to endure a torrent of vile racist abuse, including death threats death threats against Tony.
The boxer himself, and his seconds, were kicked and punched in the ensuing riot, and his pal, boxer Mo Hussein, was stabbed as he tried to help.
Tony and his mother Minna
Since his retirement the affable Tony has worked as a personal trainer, both here and in America, and passed all his exams to become a fully qualified boxing trainer.
He already has one world championship winner to his name in fellow-Midlander Cheryl Robinson, who won the women's world bantamweight title in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in 1998.
Champion Kick-boxer Kirkwood Walker also improved his fitness and performance after training with Tony, who is a revered regular supervisor at Wolverhampton Amateur Boxing Club.
Privately he has a folder full of letters from businessmen thanking him for his one-to-one fitness sessions, and he has supervised special courses in Wolverhampton schools for several years, as well as helping to train numerous Wolverhampton Wanderers footballers.
He's also a mentor and inspiration to a number of troubled Wolverhampton youngsters, and has worked for several years as a valued team member of Believe to Achieve, the charity set up by Wolverhampton machete attack heroine Lisa Potts.
Still looking fit enough to start a pro career whenever he wants to, Tony's main occupation now is helping others towards a healthier lifestyle.
" If I had another chance I'd still box, because the thing I've learned is discipline," he says. "Ray Green was very strict, and that has guided me for life. My other mentor, Frank Knowles, another physical training instructor, has also been a huge influence.
"Frank is never defeated, and he'll always find something to overcome,and turn a negative into a positive, and that's what he taught me, so when I'm mentoring now, no matter how hard the students are, and whatever problems they have, at the end of the day there's always a way round, and when you start giving, even to people who are very negative, you can show them how to be positive."
These lessons are carried through into Tony's own GET FIGHTING FIT training programme, as many testimonials from his students reveal.
Says Tony: "My aims in personal training are summed up in one word: ATTITUDE."
"Let me spell it out for you. With ATTITUDE I will develop your
I know how God has blessed me. I would like to dedicate my
work to my father and father-in-law
All things are possible. You can turn your back on tomorrow and live for today.
Tony's father, Vincent
Father-in-law, Burklyn (Roy)
to give you
Ron Flowers, Ray Green and Tony
Frank Knowles and Tony