Hello all and welcome to my latest blog, which comes shortly before my next fight – against Olegs Lopajevs at York Hall on Saturday.
The sole reason I am back in the ring is to keep alive the memory of my son, Kiyan, who I’m sure you will all know was a young player at QPR and died in 2006 after being stabbed while trying to break up a fight outside a school.
Those people who are in authority need to start working with me so we can at least go some way to tackle the problem of knife crime in this country, but still nothing of note has been done. Me being in the ring is a message to them that I won’t be disappearing anytime soon.
“I deserve the right to fight for the same kind of money and receive the same backing as these other boxers.”
At my last fight it was great to see some familiar faces, and among them a few QPR fans. I can’t stress enough how important it is to me to see as many Rangers fans as possible there on Saturday night.
It would not only mean the world to me but would also re-emphasise the fact that the bond between the club and my son’s memory is unbreakable.
That’s exactly why I’ll be donning the blue and white hoops again when I enter the ring this weekend. I hope to look around and see the same colours in a packed-out venue!
Despite my return to the ring I must stress the fact I am very disappointed that I have yet to be re-issued with a licence by the British Boxing Board of Control, which means I am not recognised in the British rankings.
You tell me any other 44-year-old who is the condition I am in. I feel like I am 24 let alone 44, but the Board aren’t having it.
They have voiced concerns over my age and my long-standing knee injury as the reasons for this, but I tell you something; I was told a long time ago I couldn’t box again but what I am doing now? That kind of says it all really.
I want to get a petition started as soon as possible for me to regain my British boxing licence, as I see no logical reason for me not getting this back.
I deserve the right to fight for the same kind of money and receive the same backing as these other boxers. Why should I be different?
My World Boxing Union cruiserweight title bout had to be cancelled recently due to a lack of sponsorship. Would this be the case if I had my licence back? Of course not.
There are so many fighters who have put boxing in a negative light in the past but they have been able to return without question. Yet I am putting the sport in a positive light through all my youth work and campaigning, but that doesn’t seem to be good enough.
On a more positive note I must say the support I have received on Twitter has been truly overwhelming and I appreciate every kind word you have all had to say to me. I have my good days and my bad days, but having that support from you people it really does mean the world to me.
On Twitter there is a #QPRFamily list which I have set up and that has over 200 members. I’d love to see at least half of them come down and support me on the night. So please come down and enjoy a fantastic night of boxing – I will not disappoint!
I’ve obviously been really busy training in the build-up to the fight to make sure I am at my peak level of fitness ready for this Saturday. My training schedule has been brutal to say the least.
I’m up at the crack of dawn every morning for a run, then after that I quickly stop off at home for a bite to eat and then I’m back out again in the afternoon for a three-hour hardcore gym session.
I then go home and chill out, get something to eat and then get some shut-eye before the next day of training comes. There’s no rest for the wicked believe me!
My sparring has also been going really well so I feel like I’m in a really good place ahead of this weekend.
I’ve had to juggle all of this around being a dad, going out and talking to young children about knife crime and talking to clients, so I’ve haven’t been bored – put it that way!
There are so many people who have helped me on this journey and supported me through thick and thin. To be honest with you I have lost count. First and foremost, my kids are the thing that keep me going every day of the week and enable me to continue to be positive and carry on Kiyan’s legacy.
My children Malik, Micaiah, Jodeci, Kishon and Tanissa have all been amazing throughout everything that has happened, and whenever I have my bad days they are always the first ones to help me pick myself up, so thank you kids I love you all very much.
I’d also like to thank everyone connected with the Kiyan Prince Foundation. You have all been fantastic and without you I’d don’t know what I’d do.
The big news this month for the KPF is that we are in negotiations for a premise in Hackney Wick.
We need to secure £2100 for six months’ rent and are confident of obtaining this and in doing so will be doing something we have wanted to do for a long, long time.
From that we are hoping to build a gym inside of the premises which will be a place for young people to come and train, and channel any of their concerns or unhappiness out in a positive manner, rather than a negative way on the streets.
Thank you all again and I hope to see many of you on Saturday at a packed York Hall. I can’t wait to get back in that ring!
For tickets for Mark Prince’s fight at York Hall on Saturday, priced £35 (standard seats) and £60 (ringside) call 07446 320593 or 07427 131850
Alternatively, tickets are available online at www.markno1prince.com or contact Mark via Twitter (@markno1prince) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/markno1prince).