Josh Taylor is not a man to live in the past and right now, becoming a world champion is simply history.
The Scot claimed the IBF super-lightweight title with a hard-fought points win over Ivan Baranchyk in Glasgow in May, but he doesn’t even have his belt out at home, he keeps it under the stairs, next to the Hoover.
“I am not one for being brash,” Taylor said. “As soon as I won the belt, it went back in the case. I had it out for a couple of days looking at it and then it was back in the case and in the cupboard under the stairs.
“I don’t have a trophy cabinet yet so there quite a few medals and trophies under there alongside the hoover and an old computer. My Commonwealth [Games gold] medal is under there but so are a lot of odd little things. I am just not one for flashing it about but maybe once I move into my new house, I might put some stuff on display.
“To me, the belt is just a bit of metal, being world champion is what I want to be. I am not too fussed about everything that goes with it or being famous.”
Taylor’s fame might defy his own expectations if he beats Regis Prograis in the final of the World Boxing Super Series at the O2 arena, London, on Saturday. Victory would also add the WBA title to his under-stairs collection, as well as a WBC Diamond belt.
“I got into boxing to become a world champion and make my family financially secure so money was some motivation,” Taylor said. “I am not a money-oriented type of guy, I just want to be financially secure and look after my family, that is part of the drive and motivation.”
“I don’t want to achieve my dream of becoming a world champion and then, when I retire, have to go and get a job and work on a building site because I have no money. I want to make wise investments and hopefully have a nice life after boxing.”
Taylor trains now in Kent, south-east of London, having had all his previous training camps as a professional in London. For several years as an amateur he was based at the GB Boxing headquarters in Sheffield, so he is used to living out of a suitcase.
He is finally getting around to putting down some roots, though, as he has just had a house built in a small village in East Lothian, east of the Scottish capital, Edinburgh.
“It’s a nice wee part of the world, so it is an exciting time for me,” he said. “It’s been ready to move in to for a while now, but I am not moving in until after the fight. I am excited about it.
“There will hopefully be a gym in the new place, I might put it in the garage, the trophy room will remain in the cupboard under the stairs.
“I am just happy to get on the property ladder and have my own place. For years now I have been living out of a suitcase in hotels or at my mum and dad’s, in between fights, living the dedicated fighter’s life 90 percent of my life away from home.
“I think I have earned the right to have a nice home and move in. I don’t know if mum and dad will miss me when I move out, maybe just me doing their heads in.”