Boxer Crolla Heading To Morrisons Great Manchester Run
Boxer Anthony Crolla has picked himself up off the ropes for one of the biggest days in the city's sporting calendar.
The proud Mancunian was desperate to keep his promise to take part in the Morrisons Great Manchester Run on Sunday, May 10, despite being the victim of a brutal attack by burglars four months ago.
Crolla was hit over the head with a lump of concrete by raiders at a neighbour's house in New Moston, leaving him seriously ill in hospital with a fractured skull and a broken ankle.
The 28-year-old fighter from New Moston bravely gave chase after he disturbed them ransacking his pal's property.
His injuries cost him a world title fight in January and put his long-term boxing future in doubt, but he is now well on the road to recovery and will join up to 40,000 runners in Europe's biggest 10k event.
He is using the challenge as preparation for a planned comeback fight at Manchester Arena in July – and to thank his legion of fans for their overwhelming support during his ordeal.
Anthony said: "The way the city turns out for the Morrisons Great Manchester Run is amazing and I couldn't believe the atmosphere last year when I took part for the first time. It's a great day and a huge amount of money is raised for good causes.
"I won't be breaking any records but I'm relieved I can take part after what happened to me. Thankfully, I'm fully recovered from my injuries and back in the gym, though I still can't run properly.
"I want to use the Run as a way of thanking people for all their best wishes. I've been genuinely humbled by the support I've had, even from people who stop me in the street and ask me how I'm getting on. That means an awful lot to me and my family.
"My injuries could have been worse and I was lucky I didn't suffer permanent brain damage, though the attack cost me a world title shot which was frustrating."
Crolla is hoping to announce soon a date and opponent for a return to the ring at Manchester Arena once he gets medical clearance from the British Boxing Board of Control.
Organisers are urging anyone thinking of entering the Manchester Run to register as soon as possible by visiting www.greatrun.org/Manchester
It starts from Portland Street at 11.30 am and will be shown live on BBC TV. The route takes runners past Old Trafford, The Lowry and the Imperial War Museum with the finish line near Beetham Tower on Deansgate.