Kevin McCauley is one of the best and most prolific journeymen in the UK, who has been testing prospects up and down the country for over a decade and has a record of 15-219-12
Although the landscape of boxing has changed and it has begun to enter a new era, some things in the sport will always be a constant. The journeyman is an unappreciated nomad, forever entwined in the history and future of the sport. Journeymen are the unheralded servants to the sport of boxing, traveling miles and miles every week to put the next prospect through the test.
Taking fights 300 miles away on 48 hours’ notice come part and parcel with the niche trade. Quick weight cuts and last-minute travel to save shows and further prospects careers all while accruing dozens of loses.
For men like Kevin McCauley, being a journeyman is a way of life. The 42-year-old from Brighton has fought in 246 professional bouts, 219 have resulted as a loss for McCauley but only 14 have been knockouts. In an Interview with BoxingDaily, McCauley spoke about his early career, he said.
“I turned pro at 29, on the stroke of turning 30 so I was already to old anyway, ‘officially’. But I decided- it was really my dad, he said you ain’t got no chance son, you can’t watch rocky and be a boxer and I thought well I’m gonna prove you wrong and that was his was of kind of driving me.”
“I did judo for 17 years at a reasonable standard and then thought you know what I’m gonna give boxing a crack I started at 27, had four amateurs gave up and then thought I need some extra pennies so yeah I decided to turn pro.
“They never were anything [having aspirations], well when I started, I thought it would be nice to win a title, I won two. I won a Midlands area, and I won a British Masters, I had ten round fights. Unfortunately, I was unable to defend them fighting away, took a defence away, lost very sharply. Ref decided to stop it and that was it, back on the road.”
Over McCauley’s approximately 13-year, seven month career, he has fought an average of just under every three weeks. A pace only comparable to boxers generations before ours, “It’s hard, you know?” McCauley explained “Most kids have a bit of time off to recuperate and recover but you don’t get that, sometimes you’re playing on an injury or just trying to get through it.
“You think oh I’m not out this weekend but then you get a call and it’s like ‘we desperately need you, can you come up to wherever,’ I’ll look at the person and I’ll be there you know.
“I’ve got a bit of a reputation for being the 999 boxers, saved a few shows over the years.
Kevin McCauley And Other Journeymen Do No Get Enough Credit
McCauley has been in with some of the best fighters and prospects Britain has had to offer at around 11 stone. Liam Smith, Frankie Gavin and Sam Eggington are in a long line of fighters that McCauley has battled with up and down the country often without a fair shake.
The sport has and will always have bad decisions, unfortunately in boxing, the away corner can come with it a disadvantage. McCaulley is an expert in the away corner, being in the away corner has become a career.
“Theres been a few recently that I’ve tried to win on a BT sport card, I think it was Jonathan Kumunteo, one of Frank Warrens lads. I thought I beat him quiet convincingly, lost on a point . There was another guy in York hall, Tommy Jacobs, lost on a point there, thought I’d just knicked it.
“To be fair I think all my draws are definitely wins and there probably been about another 20 fights where I’ve won clearly and haven’t had the nod and lost by a point, I should have at least 40, 45, 50 wins on my record but it’s just the way the cookie crumbles.”
McCauley bares no bitterness about how things have panned out, in fact he seems to really love his job, but he is honest and transparent about what it is.
“There been times where I’ve had six on the bounce, eight on the bounce and they’ve offered me a fight.” said McCauley “I can’t be arsed and I’ve just taken the fight to get some money in for my family and I’ve gone out of there, that’s my decision. That how I wanna do business”
Any honest man will also tell you that they think about how things could have been, how things could have hypothetically played out. When questioned about how he thinks of his career, McCauley said.
“Yeah, sometimes [disappointed it didn’t go another way]. Especially when sometimes I watch back, and I see the fight and I know and its blatantly obvious that I’ve won the fight and I haven’t got it. It is slightly annoying; I think it is slightly biased. And yeah, I think the name, it can interrupt the decision for the referee, ‘oh it’s a journeyman, he’s lost by a point’ even though I’ve actually won the fight. But like I say that’s the was the cookie crumbles, you just go along with the job.
McCauley has served British boxing without any kind of recognition or award from the British Boxing Board of Control. No 100th professional fight award, no 200th fight award, nothing. For over a decade McCauley has thanklessly taken short notice fights, supporting small halls shows all over the country and assisting prospects.