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BIG FIGHT COUNTDOWN: Heysham boxing trainer's 20-year journey with Isaac Lowe leads to pinnacle of Tyson Fury's undisputed fight

Isaac Lowe and Bob Howard pictured at the Fury-Usyk 'Grand Arrivals' event in Riyadh on Tuesday. Image from Isaac Lowe's Facebook page.

Heysham boxing coach Bob Howard says it's "surreal" to be part of Tyson Fury's team ahead of the 'Fight of the Century' after 20 years by the side of 'The Gypsy King's friend Isaac Lowe.

Bob has trained Morecambe featherweight Lowe since 'The Westgate Warrior' was a boy of 10 years old and has been with him right through the highs and lows of his career.

One of the true nice guys of the boxing circuit, Bob's dedication to the sport has now earned him a place as a coach in the world heavyweight champion's training camp on the biggest stage of them all.

Howard is in Saudi Arabia with Team Fury, helping to prepare both Tyson and Isaac for Saturday's huge card in Riyadh.

Bob will be in Lowe's corner when he faces Hasibullah Ahmadi on the undercard of Fury's undisputed world heavyweight title clash with Oleksandr Usyk.

He says that both WBC heavyweight champ Tyson and Isaac are in the shape of their lives, and that he can't wait to be part of the history-making event, being watched by millions all over the world.

Speaking to Beyond Radio on Wednesday from Team Fury's resort in Saudi Arabia, Bob said: "(From a) little kid off a council estate, boxing myself over the years and then 30 years of coaching, to get in that position is just unbelievable, and I'm really grateful to be part of the team."

LISTEN to Bob Howard's full interview

Bob started boxing aged 11, at Lancaster Boys Club on Dallas Road.

He boxed at amateur level, winning 45 out of 68 bouts and becoming a North West champion, and also briefly boxed as a professional.

As a coach, he has around three decades of experience, and has worked the corner for hundreds of amateur boxers up and down the country.

He first met Isaac when the budding Morecambe boxer was a young lad and was with him when he made his amateur debut, aged 10, beating future British super bantamweight champion Marc Leach at Salford Working Men's Club.

After a stellar amateur career, the 30-year-old Lowe has gone on to win the Commonwealth and WBC International Featherweight Titles, as well as boxing for the English and European titles.

The Morecambe fighter has had 29 pro contests spanning 12 years, gaining 24 wins, 3 draws and only two defeats, both to world class opponents in Luis Alberto Lopez and Nick Ball.

Isaac Lowe won his fight in London on points

"Isaac came into the gym when he was nine, 10 years old," said Bob.

"He loved the sport, fell in love with it at a young age, and he's kept on and on. He's been on some massive platforms, big shows around the world with Tyson, and then on his own back. He's done it all.

"He's coming to the part of his career where he has to get a win on Saturday night to keep it rolling. I've trained him for all this time and never had him in such great shape. He's had some world class sparring, come through all that fantastic. His weight's fine and he's looking really really well and sharp. We're looking for a big night on Saturday night. Can't wait to get there, really.

"You can't get bigger than this. This is the biggest bill in history. To be on it, is just phenomenal. He wants to put on a big show on a big stage.

"Ahmadi is a tough kid, he comes forward which will suit Isaac. I don't think he's boxed anyone near Isaac's class and that wil show on Saturday night.

"(Isaac) is on a good run of form, two KOs in his last two bouts against decent opposition, he's done a good job on them. Roll on Saturday. We just want a win."

As for Tyson Fury, Bob recalls first meeting a "big massive young kid who looked the part" when Fury first walked into the Lancaster Boys Club gym many years ago.

"He's always been a classy fighter and he's got that desire, he wants to win," said Bob.

"I think you're going to see a good performance on Saturday, something pretty special.

"He's in fantastic shape, his weight is phenomenal. His hand speed, feet, everything, he's got the full package.

Here is Tyson training with Bob. Image from Tyson Fury's Instagram.

"It's not going to be easy for him as Usyk is an accomplished champion, got massive experience.

"But Tyson's got massive boxing IQ, massive heart, desire like you wouldn't believe.

"It's going to be an interesting fight, one I'm sure Tyson comes through handsomely."

Bob and Team Fury have been in Saudi Arabia for almost two weeks, getting acclimatised to the heat which Bob said has been "stifling" and as high as 41 degrees. But he said they have been treated "absolutely fantastic" by the Saudis.

"We're getting really well looked after," he said.

"Anything you want, you just have to ask. It's completely different, I've been to a few boxing shows on the big stage but nothing like this."

On Monday, Bob was in the thick of things during the controversial moment when John Fury, Tyson's dad, headbutted a member of Usyk's squad during a heated confrontation between the teams at a media day in Riyadh.

Read more: BIG FIGHT COUNTDOWN: Tyson Fury's father John headbutts Usyk supporter ahead of undisputed heavyweight title fight - Beyond Radio

Trying to be the peacemaker, Bob was right next to Fury Snr just before the incident occurred.

Here is Bob pictured with John Fury (second right), as well as Tyson's brother Tommy Fury and manager Spencer Brown last year

"I was just getting myself a cup of coffee!" he said.

"Usyk's team were just getting a bit cheeky really. There's a lot of it you don't see. It was nothing major, just a bit of a row. Team Fury's going to stand up for themselves. It all calmed down and back to business.

"I don't think anybody wanted to have any bother or problems. You won't have seen Usyk's team prior to the video, calling and shoving other members of our team. We're not going to stand for it."

Putting Monday's unsavoury scenes behind them, Team Fury are ready for Saturday and Bob says they are looking forward to getting the job done and then getting home to their families.

A student of the sport, Howard says this is "the biggest fight there's been in the heavyweight division, if not ANY division".

"Undisputed is what it's all about, getting that win on Saturday night and putting Tyson's name in the history books," he said.

"There might be a few sticky moments but I'm quite sure Tyson will rise to the occasion, come through, lift all the belts and bring them back to Morecambe Bay."

Read more: INTERVIEW: Heysham boxing coach enjoying life at the top with Team Fury - Beyond Radio

BIG FIGHT COUNTDOWN: Tyson Fury's most memorable Morecambe moments - Beyond Radio

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