Tony Bellew- Time to go to war
Since setting out on his boxing journey, it is fair to say that Tony Bellew has proven many people wrong and in his words has ‘made the best of a bad hand’. During an amateur and professional career which has spanned 20 years, he has won 3 consecutive ABA titles, British, Commonwealth, European and World titles, as well as beating the imperious David Haye – twice.
For the majority of boxers, that would be enough and they could walk away from the sport and into the sunset delighted with their achievements. Knowing Tony, having been making his fight wear since day 1, it was no surprise however, that he has taken up the ultimate challenge of fighting the fearsome Olexandr Usyk, despite the honours he has won.
This fight promises to be a war of attrition and test both men like never before, which is why we have decided to design Tony’s shorts using a camo theme, signifying the battle that lies ahead. We visited Tony at home a couple of weeks ago, to run through the ideas and presented two separate short designs to him. The first of the two designs is a blue camo satin short, trimmed with beautiful white velvet and gold leather stars. The front waistband contains the name of Tony’s late bother-in-law Ashley, in bold Swarovski red crystals, a tribute to him and his love for Liverpool FC. ‘Bomber’ adorns the back of the waistband in vibrant gold leather, as a nod to this gold medal match up. The shorts are completed by a compulsory Everton FC crest and tribute to the late ‘Albo’, Tony’s boxing mentor from the start of his career.
The second design is very much Everton orientated, with a royal blue velvet short, accompanying blue camo side panelling and hints of gold leather trim. Ashley will again be spelt out in glorious red Swarovski crystals on the front of the waistband, with Bomber in gold leather on the back, as with the first design. The Everton FC crest is positioned the same as on the first design, as well as the name ‘Albo’ just above it. Tony is yet to confirm what shorts he will wear on the night, so it will be a surprise for us all.
The sleeveless gown we have designed continues along the same theme, with a base of royal blue velvet, blue camo shoulder panelling and gold leather trim on the pockets and central section. Gold leather stars also run down the hood, leading the Tony’s recognised Team Bomber emblem on the back. The exterior is completed with the now renowned Everton FC Crest and ‘Albo’ tribute. The beauty of this piece comes from the inner lining. We have used the same blue satin camo, ensuring Tony is encased in the pattern of the war ground. Over his heart, the word ‘Family’ is poignantly stitched. On the opposite side of the interior, on the right of the chest, the fight details and venue are written. The lining of the robe is completed with the words ‘He Who Dares’. With the robe being the last item to go on before he leaves his changing room, it serves as a reminder to Tony, who he fights for and what’s at stake, firing him up before he engages in battle.
This design may very well be the last we manufacture for Tony (if Rachel, Tony’s wife, gets her way). The fight signifies the completion of a career that has been full of some lows, but outweighed by major high’s, cumulating in ‘that’ dream night at Goodison Park, in May 2016. It’s been a pleasure for us to play a part in the career of a British boxing great in Tony Bellew. Best of luck from everyone at Suzi Wong. Go and make history Tony and bring home those belts.