Hand surgery affects boxer Tony Jeffries finances

Sunderland light-heavyweight Tony Jeffries says he has been forced to live on his savings while he recovers from a double hand operation.

The 26-year-old postponed a planned November fight to undergo essential surgery on the hands following September's win against Paul Morby.

"I only get paid when I fight," Jeffries told BBC Look North.

"I've got brilliant sponsors, but that doesn't pay the mortgage so I'm having to survive on the money I've made."

Jeffries added: "I won't be fighting now until after Christmas, with the surgery I've got to wait and let the hands get better properly, not rush into it.

"It will be January, February before I start hitting anything again."

The Olympic bronze medallist, who bears scars on both hands from the surgery on knuckle and tendon region, has also delayed his return to the Los Angeles training camp which he uses in between fights because of the injury but is itching to return to action.

"I've been boxing since I was 10, and this is the longest I've gone without hitting anyone since then," Jeffries said.

"It won't knock my confidence, I'm doing all the training, just not the punching, and I am doing my road work, strength work, core work, there's a lot I can do.

"I will come back better and stronger and I can't wait to win some titles and bring them back to the North East."