‘Hands of Stone’ set for dinner

Five-times world champion boxer Roberto Duran
Five-times world champion boxer Roberto Duran

BOXING fans will get the chance to meet one of the all-time greats at a sports dinner in Hartlepool.

Former fighter Roberto “Hands of Stone” Duran will entertain fans when he hosts an event at Seaton Carew’s Mayfair Centre.

Duran is the only man in boxing history to win fights in five separate decades after registering victories from the 1960s to the 2000s.

The hall of famer, now 60, will be joined at the event by another sporting legend in ex-Scottish boxing champion Ken Buchanan.

Duran took a world title from Buchanan, known as the Tartan Legend, in controversial circumstances following an apparent low blow.

The event at the Mayfair Centre is the first to be organised by friends Carl Miller and David Garside, from Hartlepool, in their new promotions venture Sporting Legends.

Carl, 26, a firefighter and member of Hartlepool Catholic Boxing Club got in touch with Roberto’s agent after a friend organised a similar event in Blackpool.

He said: “With Hartlepool being a big boxing town, we thought it would go down well up here.

“Roberto Duran is one of the greatest of all time. He is in the same breath as Joe Louis, Mohammed Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard.

“It was the biggest era for middleweights and he is a really famous guy.”

Fans will get the chance to ask questions and get their photos taken with the legends at the event on Thursday, October 6.

The night will also include a five-course meal, top comedian Jimmy Bright and a memorabilia auction.

Tickets are priced at £55 each or concessions for bookings of tables of 10.

In 2002, Duran was named as the fifth greatest fighter of the last 80 years.

He held world titles at four different weights for lightweight, welterweight, junior middleweight and middleweight.

Duran retired from the sport in January 2002 at age 50 following a bad car crash in 2001.

Tickets are available through NES Services in Lowthian Road, Hartlepool.