Watson to carry Paralympic Flame

Michael Watson has been chosen to carry the Paralympic Flame

Michael Watson has been chosen to carry the Paralympic Flame

First published in National © by

Former boxer Michael Watson has said he was "over the moon" to be picked to carry the Paralympic Flame.

It is almost 21 years since Watson, now aged 47, was left with a brain injury and paralysed following a fight with Chris Eubank at White Hart Lane on September 21 1991. He was not expected to live.

The super-middleweight needed six operations and spent 40 days in a coma. It was six years before he began to walk again, yet incredibly in 2003 he completed the London Marathon walking two hours each morning and afternoon for six days.

He will carry the torch through London's Trafalgar Square next Wednesday during the 24-hour Paralympic torch relay.

Watson, who now has reduced mobility to the left side of his body, said: "I am over the moon and very, very proud to have been selected to carry the flame. It is a great honour and I would like to wish ParalympicsGB lots of success and medals."

Watson, who now devotes his time to charity work and inspirational speaking, will be one of 580 torchbearers, running in teams of five, who will make up the relay.

At an average speed of 3.5mph they will be bringing the flame from Stoke Mandeville, the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement, to the opening ceremony at the Olympic Stadium.

Watson was named by the International Paralympic Committee, the global governing body of the Paralympic Movement, to be a torchbearer.

Baroness Grey Thompson, Britain's 11-time athletics Paralympic champion, is also on his relay team along with London 2012's director of Paralympic integration Chris Holmes, a nine-time Paralympic swimming gold medallist.

The full line-up is being confirmed.


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