Wakefield dentist cuts his teeth in the ring for cancer charity

Mark is more used to fixing teeth than knocking them out.
Mark is more used to fixing teeth than knocking them out.

A Wakefield dentist whose mother and daughter are both suffering with leukaemia raised £1,500 for charity when he ditched his drill and stepped into the ring.

Mark Tyzzer-Smith, 45, decided to raise money for Cancer Research UK after his mother was diagnosed in 2015 and his then-16 year old daughter Annabel two years later.

Bout time: Mark (left) just before his fight.

Bout time: Mark (left) just before his fight.

Just two weeks before a charity boxing match he signed up for to raise cash, he was given the heartbreaking news his 66-year-old mother Susan’s cancer was terminal. Meanwhile, his daughter is still going through gruelling treatment.

After taking part in eight weeks of intensive training with Ultra White Collar Boxing, who train people up free of charge for charity bouts, Mr Tyzzer-Smith, who had no boxing experience, raised £1,486.

The dentist said he had ‘always wondered’ whether he would be able to get in the ring and be punched ‘without crying’.

He said: “There isn’t much worse news you can be told than your child, who you thought was so healthy is not. It’s really difficult to put it into words how it makes you feel.

“A parent having cancer is bad, but a child, my daughter, getting it is the worst thing.

“Annabel is still having treatment now, it doesn’t finish until June next year and we are praying she will be okay.

“I had done some other fundraising before, cycling events and things and when I saw Ultra White Collar Boxing I thought I would give it a go.

“It is six minutes in the ring compared to the two-and-a-half years of cancer treatment, hair loss and time in hospital that my daughter is having to endure.”

Despite losing his bout at the Cedar Court Hotel charity night, he described the event as a “brilliant experience”.