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John Ryder: British super-middleweight announces retirement

John Ryder defeated by Jamie Munguia
John Ryder (left) suffered a seventh career defeat after being dominated by Jaime Munguia in Phoenix

British super-middleweight John Ryder has announced his retirement from boxing after a 13-year career.

The 35-year-old, who twice fought for a world title, suffered a stoppage defeat by Mexico's Jaime Munguia in his last outing on 27 January.

The Londoner retires with a record of 32 wins and seven defeats.

Ryder said it was with a "heavy heart" he had decided to stop fighting, but said he had enjoyed a "blessed" and "amazing" career.

"Starting in Bethnal Green in [September] 2010 and ending in Phoenix, Arizona. I've been lucky enough to box everywhere. For a boy from Islington, it's been some run," he said.

"Although I did not manage to win that world title, I've achieved and experienced more than I could ever have imagined when I first put on a pair of boxing gloves and I wouldn't change that for any belt."

An underdog skilled in the art of the comeback

Ryder fought a who's who of fighters at super-middleweight and middleweight including Billy Joe Saunders, Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez and Callum Smith.

Losses to Saunders, Nick Blackwell and Rocky Fielding at domestic level appeared to end hopes Ryder had of challenging at world level.

But the fighter nicknamed the Gorilla fought his way back into contention and secured his first world title shot against Liverpudlian Smith in 2019.

The unbeaten Smith was the reigning WBA (Super) and Ring Magazine super-middleweight champion and Ryder was a heavy underdog.

But he put in an assured, strong performance and was left bitterly disappointed by some contentious scorecards, which saw Smith handed a unanimous points win.

Daniel Jacob is punched in the face by John Ryder
Ryder's best win was over former world champion Daniel Jacobs in 2022

But like before, Ryder was able to bounce back.

An eye-catching win over former world champion Daniel Jacobs, followed by victory over domestic rival Zach Parker, earned Ryder a lucrative shot at undisputed champion Alvarez.

In Alvarez's home turf in Guadalajara, Mexico, Ryder took the pound-for-pound star the distance in front of 50,000 raucous fans, but lost on points.

Ryder won many fans that night in a brave performance and has proven himself a game underdog in a career defined by comebacks and a never-back-down attitude.

But after last month's one-sided defeat by Munguia, when he was dropped four times, Ryder has called it a day. He will now pursue a coaching career working alongside his former trainer, Tony Sims.