Scott Fitzgerald swapped the boxing ring for the football pitch when he was Preston North End’s special guest at the clash with Blackburn.
Fitzgerald showed off his British super welterweight title belt at Deepdale during half-time.
The 27-year-old beat Ted Cheeseman in Newcastle a week last Saturday to win the title – he triumphed against his London opponent on an unanimous points decision after a gruelling 12-rounder.
North End presented him with a PNE home shirt with ‘14-0’ on the back – his record as a pro fighter.
Addressing the Deepdale crowd, Fitzgerald said he had been enjoying a break since his victory over Cheeseman.
“I’ve been eating a lot of food and been out once or twice but not too much,” said Fitzgerald, who started out at Larches and Savick ABC.
“Hopefully there will be a TV fight next year and I can work towards that.”
Fitzgerald appearing on the pitch did prove to be a lucky omen.
North End were 2-0 down at half-time but roared back in the second half to win 3-2.
The boxer was keen to point that out when he posted his thanks to North End on social media after the game.
And he also looked back at a previous visit to Deepdale.
Fitzgerald wrote: “I walked round the pitch once before in 2014 and that year we got promoted.”
It’s been a good 2019 for Fitzgerald. He beat Anthony Fowler in Liverpool over 10 rounds in March, setting him up to fight Cheeseman.
As well as defending the British title, Fitzgerald wants a bout with Blackpool’s Brian Rose.
They were due to meet in Manchester in July but a hand injury forced Fitzgerald to pull out.