I quit my job as a BINMAN to become a European boxing champion and my team all wore high-vis jackets to the ring | The Sun

RENDALL MUNROE is the former binman turned world title challenger – whose team used to don high-vis vests on their way to the ring.

Back in the 2000s, Munroe juggled the Sweet Science with his day job of collecting bins in the streets of Leicester.

"The Boxing Binman", however, eventually packed in his refuse work when he got the call to challenge Toshiaki Nishioka for the WBC super-bantamweight title in Japan.

He recalled in an interview with talkSPORT: “Mike and Jay [Shinfield, my trainers] said to me, ‘Look, you need to concentrate more on the boxing now’.

“It was the wrong thing to do because I used to like being a ‘normal person’.

"I liked being a boxer for a training camp, eight weeks, and then I’m just Rendall, back on the bins – a normal guy.


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“After that, everything became boxing. You’re bored in the daytime but can’t train because you’d over-train.

"I was always very active, so it messed me up a little. I started going for runs when I didn’t need to. When I retired [in 2014], I went back and they told me I had no job."

Munroe's team often played up to his moniker, accompanying him to the ring in high-vis vests – which a slew of Japanese fans wore in tribute to him the night before his unsuccessful bid to dethrone Nishioka.

The former EBU super bantamweight champ said: “At the weigh-in [pre-Nishioka], I had a few Japanese fans with high-vis [binman] vests at the scales.

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"There was a Japanese fan that came and waited outside my [hotel] room and gave me a cup and a dream catcher. I’ve still got them at home in a glass cabinet.

“I’m a guy who just enjoys boxing. For people like that to wait outside my hotel room – there must have been about 600 rooms – it touches you a bit.”

Munroe and his body failed to rise to the occasion as he suffered a unanimous decision defeat in what would be his sole world title fight.

He recalled: "It got to the fifth round, and I remember sitting down and Jay would be, ‘Are we ready to turn up the gas now?’.

"Normally I’d be, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah’. [This time] I stood up, and both my calves cramped up. ‘Wow, what’s going on here?’ I’m half-a-second out, all the time.

“It was about the seventh round I come back and said, ‘Jay, I don’t think I’m going to win. I ain’t going to let him stop me’.

"When the final bell went I went back to my corner and broke down. ‘The biggest fight of my career, and it’s gone wrong. I just don’t know what’s gone on.’

“It’s like someone’s looking at you – hit this – and then it’s gone. My body just didn’t feel that sharpness.

"Sometimes you can get away with it; when you’re in there with the elite, you ain’t getting away with it."

Munroe bounced back from championship heartache with three victories before back-to-back bouts with Scott Quigg, the first of which he drew and the second he lost.

He ended his career – which he looks back on with great pride – following a seventh-round TKO defeat to Josh Warrington.

He said: “I proved myself good enough to be in there with the best.

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“I wanted enough money out of boxing to buy a house to live in and buy a house to rent, and then I’m going to kick back and enjoy life.

"Boxing wasn’t as much money as it is now, but it was still decent. I achieved what I wanted to achieve.”

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