Bobbing side to side, doing an inelegant Ali shuffle, telling the mirror, “I’m the greatest!” and “I’m a baaaaad man!”
Little Simon Finlayson got into boxing the way so many in the 60s, 70s, and 80s did…he saw Muhammad Ali, the majestic grace of movement, master of balletic boxing, and mimicked the fighter.
But he didn’t take it beyond the bobbing and weaving and mimicry until he was 50 years old.
Now 57, Finlayson will be traveling to Brooklyn, NY from his home in Germany, to attend the 4th Masters Boxing Tournament at the famed and fabled Gleason’s Gym in DUMBO, June 13-16.
I asked the tourney vet more about how and why he got into the sport. “I was introduced to the sweet science by an ex fighter, from Bosnia,” he said. “After a cracked rib and numerious kidney shots, he got me hooked. I train now in a small town in Germany, with Russians, South Africans, Germans and Romanians, all half my age and better than me! We also have one New Zealander, no, not Dave Tua or Joesph Parker, me! I played basketball for New Zealand, a long time ago, rugby for my school (a very long time ago)and tennis.”
Finlayson has been a full-time professional tennis coach for the past 38 years and has lived in Germany for the last 24 years.
So, why does he seem so adoring of this tournament, anyway?
“This tournament is the only way to get a fight. What better way than in New York City at a gym that is one of boxing meccas,” Finlayson continued. “Bruce Silverglade and the team have really looked after me. They are all very down to earth people…my type of people! I'd travel four times a year if Bruce held such tournaments every three months! Now, I don't think I'm a boxer….I box. This tournament makes you feel part of a proud, brave culture. I'm proud to be a part.”
You can join Finlayson and be part of the stellar event, click here for more info.