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Billy Ellaway

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Name: Billy Ellaway
Career Record:click
Nationality: British
Birthplace: Liverpool, England
Hometown: Liverpool, Merseyside, United Kingdom
Born: 1932-10-09

 During the early part of his career Billy Ellaway was nothing short of a sensation at the Liverpool Stadium. A terrific puncher, most of his contests failed to go past the early rounds and whenever the Bootle Boy appeared at the Stadium the “House Full” sign usually went up.

 

BILLY ELLAWAY 

Billy EllawayDuring the early part of his career Billy Ellaway was nothing short of a sensation at the Liverpool Stadium. A terrific puncher, most of his contests failed to go past the early rounds and whenever the Bootle Boy appeared at the Stadium the “House Full” sign usually went up. 

He had 73 pro fights winning 51 and losing 21.He twice fought in eliminators for the British title – then held by his closest rival Pat McAteer ( long time President of the Wirral Ex Boxers ) but defeated on both occasions. First by Lew Lazar and then by the “Liverpool Dane” Martin Hansen. 

From his pro debut in 1950, when he stopped Eric Metcalf in three rounds,until he was stopped in six rounds by Chic Calderwood in 1958, Billy battled his way through 73 contests. 

His ring career started due to a fight over some fire works on bonfire night. A family friend saw the scap and suggested he went along to the old Crown ABC run by Jimmy Duffy. Billy duly took the hint and had his first official contest on his 13th birthday. He lost the decision but went on to win Army Cadet championship in 1949 ( welter) and 1950 (middle). 

He also won an open competition for the Metropolitan Police Crown but never saw the Cup again after it was taken to be engraved. Billy turned pro aged 18 but was actually only 17 when he signed for manager Jimmy Duffy and thus needed parental consent. 

“ My father wasn’t keen on me turning professional so I persuaded my mother to sign in his name” 

altogether as an amateur, Billy had around 100 contests, if you include the  many he had at Mat Moran’s booth in Bootle North Park where at the age of 14 and 15 he stood and challenged all comers. It was in that booth where he suffered a knuckle fracture that all but ended his career before it had started. 

When he left Beach Road School where he had won medals for swimming, diving, life saving and running, Billy started his working life as an apprentice engineer. After two years however he was given an ultimatum .

 “Give up boxing or find another Job” 

He left and began work as an apprentice painter. This job qualified him for deferment from National Service but when he was 19 he went into the 1st Kings Regiment. He served his two years finishing as a provost sergeant after active service in Korea. 

Prior to joining up in November 1951 Billy had run up a total of 16 wins – 14 inside the distance – out f 21 bouts and his fierce punching power had made him a great crowd puller. During this time he, aged 18, had knocked out Dick Langley in two rounds, Langley was a top contender to Randy Turpin and this performance earned Billy a “Boxing News” Certificate of Merit. 

Early in 1952 he lost to Joe Maseko, then knocked out Jackie Scott in one round. Army service was biting deep into his fight ambitions however and he didn’t appear in the ring again for 11 months when he was to beat Jack Johnson kofi. This was in January 1953 and the Billy left for Korea returning the following December to beat Bert Saunders at Blackpool. 

He had a further four years in the game bringing of some sensational wins but also suffered some costly defeats. When he knocked out Sharkey Lewis, the Jamaican champion, he was promised a crack at the European Champion Charles Humez but it never materialised. After his two eliminator defeats, the nearest he got to a title was when he met Champion Pat McAteer at the Stadium. 

This was in August 1956 and Billy revealed a fact that few people were aware of “ I didn’t get the decision but I actually got paid more money than the champion. Pat was on a fixed purse, but I preferred to go for a percentage of the gate. 

As to the fight itself Billy produced a big right hand in the first round to put Pat down for a count of 8. He never got another clear shot and lost on points. 

In the twilight of his career Billy moved on from manager Duffy to join up with Birkenheads Johnny Campbell, but at the age of 26, following successive defeats at the hands of Empire champion Dick Tiger, Dave Mooney ( wishaw) and world rated Chic Calderwood he finally hung up his gloves for good.