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‘I was a binge drinker. I was very calculating – I’d work out how many days I would need to be off it to look presentable for training’

Former Olympic boxing champion Kenneth Egan overcame alcoholism and adversity to turn his life around and qualify as an addiction counsellor. The family man talks about how focusing on helping others keeps his demons at bay

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Former Olympic boxer Kenneth Egan is now helping others deal with addiction. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Former Olympic boxer Kenneth Egan is now helping others deal with addiction. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Former Olympic boxer Kenneth Egan is now helping others deal with addiction. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Lockdown has left most of us looking a little rougher around the edges, but not Kenny Egan. The glazed and slightly haunted expression he wore through his years as a tabloid wild child is gone and the superhero lantern jaw, which took so many literal and metaphorical punches, is now covered by a handsome salt and pepper-flecked beard.

Most of all the former Olympic boxer’s transformation is clear in the easy, confident way he speaks about his journey from the depths of despair, to life as a family man and addiction counsellor who guides others on their own recovery. In a sport littered with the body of young men who didn’t overcome their demons, it’s an inspiring story of redemption won the hard way and the former boxer is the subject of a moving episode of TG4 series Finne, to air later this week.


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