To boxing fans the name Jane Couch is as well known as most of her male boxing counter parts. A testimony of how far the Fleetwood Assassin has come…
A professional fighter for 14 years, Jane Couch MBE (28–11-9kos) went in with the best women light-welterweight boxers of her generation, including Marischa Sjauw, Sharon Anyos, Leah Mellinger, Dora Webber, Anne Sophie Mathis and also the brilliant Lucia Rijker to name just a few.
Jane aka ‘The Fleetwood Assassin, credits boxing with keeping her out of big-time trouble. After being expelled from her Blackpool school as a teenager, she lived what she described as “a life of booze, drugs and street fighting” until she was 26. Then she saw a TV documentary about women’s boxing in America and decided that her future lay in the ring and in a life of boxing.
Jane from Fleetwood in Lancashire has had to overcome significant barriers in the game over the years, that prevented females from entering the boxing ring, and she has been a pioneer in getting women’s boxing recognised as a serious sport in the eyes of the games purists who saw it as wrong.
In 1998 Jane made British boxing history by being involved in the first women’s professional boxing contest to be sanctioned under the jurisdiction of the British Boxing Board of Control since it’s formation in 1929, making her the first recognised female British boxer.
The five times world champion also worked tirelessly to help get women’s boxing included in the London 2012 Olympics. In 2007 to cap a remarkable career and rise from the streets to boxing prominence, Jane was awarded an M.B.E. from Prince Charles for her achievements both in and out of the ring.
On receiving the M.B.E at Buckingham Palace, Jane said, “I’ve been all over the world boxing in some of the biggest shows in front of millions of people but this is the biggest shock ever,”
“I was so nervous that I forgot that I was supposed to call him ‘Your Majesty’. Instead I just said hello mate ! ” admitted Jane afterwards. “But he was killing himself laughing and at one point told me I was a bit unusual ! I offered to shake his hand and suggested I had better go because he had others to talk to, but he said he could talk to me all day. As for my curtsy – well it is best forgotten !” she later added.
Whatever injustice’s went on during Janes career and the reluctance of many to stop her being a boxer, and achieving her dreams, Jane never gave up and it is an absolute credit to her for never losing the desire to succeed and believing that there is no such word as ‘you can’t’
|Jane with Ricky Hatton|
Jane announced her retirement from fighting in December, 2008, and is now involved in the promotion and management of her own stable of boxers, under the banner of Blackeye promotions, and is also involved in Hatton promotions. British Boxers caught up with Jane this week for our ‘In the ring with’ series.
‘In the Ring’ with Jane Couch
Jane When and how did you get into boxing?
I saw a documentary about female boxing in The USA and started from there I didn’t realise it was illegal in this country at the time
How would you describe your fight style?
Definitely more of a fighter than a boxer
Who influenced you as a young boxer?
A young Tyson
Toughest/Best opponent you have faced?
Toughest Part of being a boxer?
Making weight and living the life No social life
I fought everyone never ducked any of the top girls
Best fight you have seen?
Theres a few Corrales v Castillo Benn v McClellan Barrera v Morales
Dream Fight? Who v Who?
Mayweather v Pacman
Mayweather v Pacman
Favorite all time boxer, World and British?
Sugar Ray Robinson and Ricky Hatton
Favorite British fighter at the moment?
What do you do when you are not Boxing?
Promote boxing, Manage boxers, my life is just boxing If you cut me open i would probably bleed boxing (laughs)
What would you do if you wasn’t a boxer?
Hard to say i don’t know anything else But definitely something unusual
Which British Boxers should we look out for?
Like the look of Ricky Owen he did great in Prizefighter
To be the best
What music do you listen too?
Pretty much anything
Last book you read?
The Bible (joking) Steve Bunces new book
As Good as it gets – Pretty Woman – Once upon a time in America
Who would play you in a movie of your life?
Fish and Chips and Italian
Best Holiday destination?
What other sports do you watch?
I take a interest in all sports
Best friends in Boxing?
Nick Hodges (matchmaker) Tex Woodward (Manager) Tommy Gilmour MBE John Pegg (Matchmaker) Errol Johnson… God too many friends in boxing.
Which 3 people would you be stranded on a Desert Island with?
Jack Nicholson, Floyd Mayweather and My soul mate
Tell us something we don’t know about you?
I’m Mad lol
Who is the greatest British Boxer of all time?
Quick Fire Questions:
Red or Blue? red
Hagler or Sugar Ray Leonard? Hagler
Benn or Eubank? Benn
Haye or Lennox? Haye
Paquiao or Mayweather? Pacman
Jab or Hook? Jab
Head or Body? Head
WBC or WBA? WBC
European or British Title? British
Drink? Vodka and coke
One thing you cant live without? mobile phone
Favorite Quote? To be great you must do great things
What does the future hold for you? Hopefully a happy healthy life