Dean Francis: Boxers raise money for terminally ill former champion

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Bristol boxer Dean Francis has been diagnosed with terminal cancer

IBF world bantamweight champion Lee Haskins has launched a fundraising campaign to support retired boxer Dean Francis, after the 43-year-old was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Francis, who retired in 2015, was diagnosed by doctors in January.

Haskins wants to help raise £100,000 towards the cost of private treatments.

James DeGale, the current IBF super-middleweight champion, is among the professionals to have voiced support for Francis on social media.

Francis won 34 of his 40 professional fights, with five defeats and a draw.

He won the WBO intercontinental, European and British titles at super-middleweight, before moving up to the light-heavyweight division and winning the British, Commonwealth and intercontinental belts.

"He's always been a mentally strong person," Haskins told BBC Radio Bristol.

"He's an amazing man, he's mentally strong, I'm going to be just as strong for him and we all are together."

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