Tributes paid to 25-year-old father who 'fought right to the end'
Scottish boxer Mike Towell has died in hospital a day after he was seriously injured in a bout, his management have confirmed.
The 25-year-old father dubbed "Iron Mike" suffered a fifth-round loss to Welshman Dale Evans in a St Andrews Sporting Club welterweight fight in Glasgow on Thursday night.
He was taken from the ring on a stretcher and rushed to hospital where he was diagnosed with severe bleeding and swelling to his brain.
Towell, from Dundee, was knocked down in the first round and again in the fifth before the stoppage, according to the BoxRed database of fights.
The match was refereed by Victor Loughlin, who was also in charge of the British middleweight title fight in March between Chris Eubank and Nick Blackwell, which ended the latter's career after he suffered a bleed on the skull when he was stopped in 10 rounds.
After the fight, an eliminator for the British welterweight title, Evans released a statement saying he was "devastated" to see Towell being taken from the ring on a stretcher.
"The aftermath of the fight is so hard to take in but I just want people to know that every thought I have today is with Mike Towell's family," he said.
Towell had been undefeated going into Thursday's fight, with 11 previous wins and one draw on his professional record.
He passed away with his family at his bedside shortly after 11pm on Friday evening, 12 hours after he was taken off life support.
Towell's partner, Chloe Ross, said she was "absolutely heartbroken".
The couple had been together for over eight years and had a young son, Rocco.
In an emotional Facebook post, she said: "It has been the longest 24 hours of our lives. My baby has lost his daddy. But he will be so so proud of his dad in what he achieved."
She added: "Once he was taken off of his life support He managed 12 hours, 12 whole rounds off his life support, he fought right to the end and he's done us all so proud... He left doing the thing he's best at... there's only one."
According to Ms Ross, the welterweight had been complaining of migraines in the run-up to the fight but put it down to stress.
Members of the boxing community have paid tribute to the fighter.
St Andrews Sporting Club said Towell "will always be in our hearts".
Promoter Eddie Hearn tweeted: "Absolutely devastated by the passing of Mike Towell - all of our thoughts with his friends and family at this time."
Absolutely devastated by the passing of Mike Towell - all of our thoughts with his friends and family at this time— Eddie Hearn (@EddieHearn) October 1, 2016
Former European champion Spencer Oliver tweeted: "So saddened to hear of the devastating news that Mike Towell has passed away, my thoughts & prayers are with his family & friends. #RIP x."
Boxer Tommy Coyle, former international lightweight champion, said: "Wow Mike Towell may you rest in peace and know that every fighting man has nothing but respect for you."