Mon - Fri 09:00 - 18.00
Central Court 25 Southampton Buildings London WC2A 1AL
Tel: +44 020 7936 3637
DX 458 London Chancery Lane
Chambers provides an out of hours service. If you call Chambers main number you will be diverted to the clerk on call who will be able to deal with your enquiry.
Guy Williamson is a former police officer and former ABA Super Heavyweight Champion turned barrister.
Called to the Bar in 2002 to further his career in the law, Guy now specialises in sports law. As a former regional ABA ABA Heavyweight and National Super Heavyweight Champion, two times Police Olympic Super Heavyweight gold medalist, Police and Fire World Games Super Heavyweight gold medalist and former Head Coach of the multiple medal winning British Boxing Team at the 1997 Police, Fire World Championships and recipient of the Queen’s Police Medal for “distinguished service” in the Queen’s 2004 Birthday Honours list, Guy is the perfect barrister to represent both amateur and professional boxers the world over. His deep knowledge and understanding of both the world of boxing and the world of law leave him ideally placed to advise and comment on boxing and related legal matters.
In this article Guy focuses on his experiences as a boxer and highlights a number of transferable skills from the world of boxing that he has taken into the Bar. The Bar is certainly not where one would expect to find former boxing Olympic and World Championship gold medalists, but it appears that there are a number of similarities between the two vocations.
Gladiators in an alternative arena
Boxing is: ‘The sweet science of Pugilism’ a sport that displays grace and power as an art form in the face of violence and skill. Akin to a game of chess played in the face of danger. Unfortunately boxing suffers more than any other sport from misconceived perceptions concerning the intellectual capacity of Boxers. The majority of people have no understanding or disregard the intelligence required to be a boxer, due to a lack of knowledge to dispel injudicious stereotyping and misconception encouraging the belief boxer are inarticulate brutes who can only express themselves through their fists.
Boxing is a complicated sport that requires a high level of innate and acquired knowledge in the application. Encompassing a broad knowledge of the key concepts in the discipline of pugilism, perfecting skills and the mastery of ring craft. A boxer will use the training environment to integrate positive new knowledge and behavioural routines which become subconscious competencies, which are difficult to deconstruct during the pressure of intensive competition when using mental and physical agility to incorporate a combination of tactics.
Boxers have to embrace the fundamental principles of learning where the purpose of the training is to increase their knowledge and understanding of pugilism by developing a competitive disposition, coupled with flexibility in problem solving with a situational capacity for change when faced with new and unexpected findings.
Boxing training encompasses an ethos of ‘Never give up’, reinforced with a strong work ethic where in order to succeed you develop the ability to think laterally whilst keeping within the rules. The use of key concepts in the discipline of pugilism, utilising fresh approaches and frameworks whist remaining objective. Boxers will then develop their own unique style and work within the rules that govern boxing by building on their practical experiences and then pushing beyond it.
Boxing encourages a state of mind that instills a sense of discipline, dedication and fearlessness in preparing for an uncertain future. In order to become a successful boxer, the boxer has to ask himself the question, ‘Am I ready to live, eat, sleep, and breathe boxing in the pursuit of my aspirations and dreams?’ Boxers learns to develop by being critical and analytical of their performance, encompassing self assessment and looking at issues strategically.
Boxing encourages an individual to become decisive and confident to trust their cultivated judgment. They learn as a boxer to take control of situations and your emotions and not to let the situation control you. Tactics are very important, they do not want to walk into the fists of a harder hitting opponent. They learn that preparation is everything if they do not prepare, they prepare to fail in a situation where they may suffer serious physical and/or psychological harm.
There are no easy options for a boxer, The combinations of athleticism and mental conditioning where you have the tenacity to work hard until they are unable to push themselves further.
They work hard in the gym to be prepared for the contest or they do not work in the gym and have a harder contest than it may have been. Staying prepared is necessary so they do not have to restructure for every new occasion. The culture in boxing gymnasiums promotes core values, encouraging the boxer to become hard working, ambitious, respectful, disciplined, determined and dedicated to shape the lives they hope to live. Unlike those three world famous Boxers: Wouldov, Couldov and Shouldov. (I would have done it, I could have done it. I should have done it).
Exposure to boxing can sometimes be a humbling experience where they develop empathy and understanding of all echelons of society. Maintaining alternative outlooks on their socio-political and economic environmental issues. This is the true epitome of what boxing hopes to achieve in the development in the mind set of young people, that there is no substitute for hard work as the foundation for success. To develop platforms for change in themselves by empowering them to become psychologically present, responsive and productive.
Individuals experience different advantages and disadvantages in direct relationship to their assigned position in society and it is impossible to either deny or ignore the reality of the impact these categorisation have on people lives. Boxing thrives in a cosmopolitan atmosphere where enquiry and the pursuit of knowledge is actively encouraged, the participants enthralled by every developing issue and their appreciation of the chosen topics which shaped the choice made in their lives.
The boxing gym is a place where a boxer’s peers will inspire, encourage and motivate each other to believe the impossible is achievable. Boxing has had immeasurable benefits on young minds where it has a positive effect on people who are vulnerable, suffer from low self esteem, have anger management issues and those participating in crime.
From sparring in the ring to sparring in court
There is a clear overlap between the competitive nature of a boxer and that of being a barrister, where the skill level of the combatants determine the outcome of the contest. The Boxers and Barristers develop interchangeable skills where they are capable of evaluating a situation, utilising analytical and critical thought processes collecting and categorizing information in order to create methods to succeed. Practicing designed and developed general techniques and theoretical approaches when making decisions.
The ability to think laterally and strategically is essential for a boxer where consideration is given to the development of short, medium and long term plans that are aligned, focused, carefully measured and balanced when preparing for a contest, it is necessary to have a pre-fight strategy that question the boxer’s passion and will, this will ensure they remain focused to achieve their goals. The creativity used by the boxer during the contest where challenges have to be foreseen, information gathered about an opponents technique, style and work ethic are utilised. During the contest traps will be laid and bluffs undertaken.
The sportsmanship and self worth that is developed from boxing is unrivalled in any other sport. It leads a person to learn many things about themselves and about others. They learn that the most valuable lesson is knowing how to deal with deal with failure or victory. Most boxers’ expectations are echoed in the passage from Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s Flight to Arras (Saint-Exupery 1987):
‘He who bears in his heart a cathedral to be built is already victorious. He who seeks to become a sexton of a finished cathedral is already defeated’. Boxers endeavor to live by this maxim every day’. THE ONLY WAY TO PREDICT THE FUTURE IS TO CREATE IT’.
The creativity and critical judgment they develop as a boxer enables them to be successful by being self-motivated and ensuring any new knowledge is relevant and integrated in there preparation for maximum use. Be it as a boxer or as a barrister paying regular ‘homage’ in a temple, albeit a library, court room or gymnasium sees the practice of discipline and almost religious devotion, both are merely Gladiators in the arena.
So how do we resolve the age old problem of racism in the game? Is there actually a problem? Has the problem been caused by... more
Imagine the letter from the Police, the SFO or HMRC: “We would like to discuss your company’s loan that was secured from the... more
Caster Semenya’s Appeal to Switzerland’s Federal Supreme Court from her unsuccessful case at CAS was rejected last week.... more
Sports Stars and Unpaid Wages – Yasin Patel looks at the World of Professional Cricket and the growing problem of what can... more
On 2 July 2020 the National Crime Agency confirmed that it had dismantled “entire organised crime groups” through Operation... more
It is not just in the worlds of finance and commerce where the effects of the global Corona Virus pandemic are currently being... more
In January 2019, Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood wrote an Article on Unexplained Wealth Orders (UWO’s). This Article provides an... more
Following on from Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood’s article on Fraud under the furlough scheme, this article takes a closer... more
Church Court Chambers proudly presents our first Webinar, “Jury Really Want To Hurt Me?” – The Culture Club of Trial by... more
“In this short article Gregory Wedge of Chambers Crime and Regulatory Group analyses the recent Court of Appeal authority... more
Notwithstanding the seriousness of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and a global effort to fight the same, some individuals... more
Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood look at the potential criminal offences arising from the furlough scheme and what multi-national... more
Many businesses are wondering whether the Covid-19 Pandemic will allow a reduction or, alternatively, end their existing... more
In light of the unprecedented measures that the UK government has put in place to address the Coronavirus pandemic, George... more
Kerim Fuad QC, Head of Chambers, and Colin Witcher of Chambers Crime and Regulatory Group suggest three recent authorities to be... more
The “ Magnitsky Act” is a trailblazing piece of legislation enacted by the United States. Lesley Manley looks at developments... more
Cannabis, good drug or bad? The topic of debate internationally for decades by governments, medical professionals, recreational... more
Islam Khan discusses a recent Court Of Appeal case in an immigration matter shifting the test on proportionality on Human Rights... more
Islam Khan explores what the “BANGER” extension establishes and how it affects the current “Surinder... more
For even the most dyed in the wool Conservative voter, Conservative Central Headquarters’ decision to rename their twitter... more
Does your neighbour regularly park across your driveway? Have a dog that howls or barks incessantly? Have children that make... more
This weekend the Rugby World Cup Final between England and South Africa will be watched by billions around the globe. Inside... more
……“the consequences of the infringement of the procedural rules about contempt proceedings may be just as serious... more
R (on the application of Miller) (Appellant) v The Prime Minister (Respondent) Cherry and others (Respondents) v Advocate General... more
Over the past week, Lewis Power QC has been representing the Church Court International Law Team across the pond. Mr. Power QC... more
Lincoln’s Inn Barrister Still Missing Despite the Promises of Foreign Adviser Gowher Rizvi to Assist after Al Jazeera Head to... more
Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood look at one of the most important pieces of legislation passed in recent years. One that is looking... more
As October 31st 2019 draws nearer, Britain’s exit from the European Union and its exact terms become all the more important. ... more
The Corporate Manslaughter and Homicide Act 2007 (the Act), was designed to create a statutory offence, facilitating the... more
Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood look at the area of drill music and the law. This article is split into two parts: the first part... more
Yasin Patel looks at the question of “racism in football”. In this two part series, the first article outlines the arguments... more
In this article, written by Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood, we look at the areas of drugs, and in particular ‘county lines’... more
The British government and its agencies powers of investigation will increase significantly with a new piece of legislation.... more
Since the downfall of ISIS and the liberation of many Syrian people, women and children (and whole families) have been fleeing to... more
Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion. What is the difference? One is illegal and one is smart tax planning. But which is which? Local... more
Yasin Patel and Amy Hazlewood explore the problems surrounding drones, from their use in humanitarian activities to drugs being... more
Yasin Patel looks at the growing area of ‘Image Rights’ and why it makes sense for a sports star to protect their ‘image... more
The case of Zamira Hajiyeva and the Unexplained Wealth Order “UWO” restrictions imposed upon her have brought to... more
New Law Journal publishes article by George Hepburne Scott regarding the recent ground breaking High Court case regarding prison... more
New Law Journal publishes an article by George Hepburne Scott regarding changes to the judiciary in Poland. George Hepburne Scott... more
‘Suck my d**k, you n****r, you n***o’ Offended by the title. And so you should be, but what are you going to do about it?... more
Please follow link below to read George Hepburne Scotts article on extradition published in the New Law Journal.... more
The Situation before the Human Rights Act In the traditional doctrine of statutory interpretation, the courts looked at the... more
The new Prime Minister Theresa May has announced a review of the Modern Slavery Act 2015; it is clear that corporate compliance... more
The Court of Appeal in the case of Griffiths 1 QB 589, made an apposite observation concerning a growing trend towards indicting... more
On 23 June 2016 over 33 million people voted in the EU referendum. Since that date there has been widespread anger from those who... more
Alkan Shenyuz is a barrister with Church Court Chambers specialising in international commercial law and in this article for... more
Leading legal publisher Westlaw has published Michael Polak’s article on INTERPOL notices. INTERPOL notices can severely... more
Alkan Shenyuz, a barrister and specialist in banking and financial services looks at the new EU Payment Services Directive and... more
In a clear sign that regulators want to open up competition in the UK banking industry to new banks, the Prudential Regulatory... more
In R (on the application of DC and The Secretary of State for Justice EWHC 33 (Admin) the High Court considered the law of... more
Whilst it would be naïve to suggest that ‘marriages of convenience’ do not occur, the Home Office seem to me to be using... more
Anthony assisted partners in Peters & Peters LLP in providing an expert summary of the laws and regulations which have been... more
Looted antiquities from Syria – what collectors need to know Alkan Shenyuz, barrister with Church Court Chambers discusses what... more
Modern Slavery Act 2015 The introduction of this consolidating act is to be welcomed. As with all recent changes to criminal... more
Alkan Shenyuz, a barrister with Church Court Chambers in London and a specialist in international law, summarises the key legal... more
The Government’s announcement in June that it is to bring forward legislation in Parliament to ratify the Hague Convention on... more
An interesting and insightful article from Lesley Manley of Church Court Chambers on mental impaired clients. It is often helpful... more