I had the privilege of sitting down with one of our most recent Fight Night winners, Finn Mawer, for a little chat. Also dubbed ‘the Destroyer’ or ‘the mullet man’ that night, he pulled off a win by decision against Adam Georghiou. Read on to find out Finn’s strengths and weaknesses, how winning felt and the reason behind the mullet.
What sort of training did you get signing up?
The training for the first two weeks was technique based and allowed us to get a bit of a grip, then from two weeks in most sessions were sparring based with feedback after the fighting to work on what we did wrong. Sparring was the most useful part of the training as it gave us some real experience of going up against each other and managing the emotions of a fight.
How prepared were you going into the ring, and what did you think your strengths and weaknesses were?
I don’t think I could ever be fully mentally prepared, going into that ring I disassociated quite heavily but managed to keep my head in the game. In terms of boxing preparation I think I was fairly ready for a counterpunch style fight but the reality of the fight required me to be the aggressor which was not something I had prepared for nearly as much. Fitness wise I was massively underprepared, it was the most exhausting thing I’ve ever done and I was running on empty after the first round.
I think my strengths were definitely my foot work, speed and reach (Also my overall drive and my mullet) I had no shortages of weaknesses though as being quite small in frame meant I don’t have much meat on the bone to take any punches, and if you watch the fight I also have a shocking habit of throwing diabolical right hooks which never hit and leave me so exposed haha.
Inspiration behind the nickname?
The nickname comes from school growing up where it was used ironically as I wasn’t very good at football or any sports really, so I thought about time to reclaim the nickname and give my own spin on it.
How do you think your performance was throughout the three rounds?
Round 1 was tough as I was trying to work out what I could get away with without getting hit and I always find I’m a lot more nervous before I’ve been hit a couple of times to activate the adrenaline. Round 2 I was already absolutely shattered, so I thought I was screwed completely but after he hit me a couple of times I found some anger and aggression to motivate me into being the one punching and not getting punched. As this point, I saw more tiredness in him so I just started going for him but made sure to leave something for round 3. Then knowing it was my last round I just gave it everything and tried to make sure he didn’t get a moments rest as I thought this way I could solidify my victory by keeping him on the back foot all round. Each round felt about a year long I will say, so always try and keep more energy reserves for the 2nd and 3rd than you think you need.
Can you describe what you felt when you won?
The unbridled joy and relaxation I felt upon winning was completely encompassing. In that moment everything just melted away and knowing all that effort paid off and that I had got away without any proper injuries was fantastic. But yeah just a true movie moment for me, I can’t really put into words how it feels to have your arm lifted like that and knowing it was all worth it.
Were you carrying any good luck charms or superstitions? (In translation of what was on everyone’s mind that night: did the mullet help?)
I always wear my grandfather’s necklace that I inherited when he passed away and it has always motivated me to dig deeper and push harder knowing he’s watching over me. He was an incredible man and if I can be half the man he was I’ll have done him proud so that provides a lot of my drive and motivation. The mullet definitely helped as it always has to make me relax a little bit, as if I’m not taking myself too seriously I’ll just have a better time. I will say the fringe element of it has led me to getting punched as I can’t see anything, so maybe long term for boxing it would need taming.
What was your favourite moment of the night? (Not including the part where you won)
Hard to just give one favourite moment of the night, but hugging Henry after he had won his fight and after I won mine and us knowing all that training we did together paid off was a great moment. Getting home and just sitting around with all my friends that came to support me, everyone just in good mood and chatting away like back to normality was lovely too as it felt like I could properly relax again.
Lastly, any advice for people thinking about trying fight night, and would you be back?
Don’t sign up if you aren’t going to give the process 100% effort for your own sake as well as everyone else involved. I would also say that overall the process itself is very rewarding as a whole, but during it, it is stressful, exhausting and definitely not fun so be prepared to have bad days. I definitely plan to keep boxing casually just for the cardio and the addicting adrenaline rush, but I don’t think I’ll be doing Fight Night again this academic year as it’s extremely time-consuming and I wouldn’t be able to commit to it again without getting chronically behind on uni work or disregarding my social life for another 8 weeks.