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BlogCrolla, Farrell and Yarde take centre stage to talk about mental health

Crolla, Farrell and Yarde take centre stage to talk about mental health

An all-star line-up of sporting icons including Anthony Crolla, Marland Yarde and Kieran Farrell were the special guests at an exclusive business event in Manchester focused on mental health.

Organised by Premiership Rugby side Sale Sharks and Morson Group, more than 100 people attended a panel-style discussion to hear more from the two boxers and the Sale winger as they talked about overcoming challenges in sport.

Manchester-born ‘Million Dollar’ Crolla and former professional boxer Farrell relived their championship bout in 2012, where Farrell suffered a life-threatening brain injury and was subsequently forced to retire from the sport at the age of just 22.

Both fighters admitted struggling to come to terms with what happened that night with Crolla describing it as ‘the darkest moment of his life’ in his autobiography.

Since then, Crolla has gone on to have a glittering boxing career and is now preparing to take a shot at the WBA lightweight belt in a soon-to-be-arranged fight with Vasyl Lomachenko.

Farrell retired from the sport but went on to set up the ‘People’s Gym’ in Heywood in 2013 and his work in the community was recognised by the Queen in 2016 when he was awarded a BME.

Sharks star Marland Yarde spoke about the serious injury he sustained last month when he dislocated his left knee and ruptured his MCL and ACL ligaments against Newcastle Falcons.

The winger had been in impressive form before the injury put the brakes on his hopes of forcing his way into the England squad, and he talked about how he’s come to terms with the setback with the help of his teammates and family and is now totally focused on his recovery.

The three stars were joined on stage by Sale Sharks Mental Performance Consultant Mick Farrell; Kristina McGurk, marketing director at Sale Sharks’ principal partner, UKFast, and Dom McGuiness from talkSPORT who hosted the discussion.

“This was a fascinating event with some huge names from the world of sport in attendance to help shine a light on some of the key issues around mental health,” said Sale Sharks Commercial Director, Mark Cueto.

“The story of the fight between Anthony and Kieran is one that so many people in the world of sport will remember well, so to have both boxers together discussing that night and how they have individually dealt with everything that came after it was really inspiring.

“Marland is coming back from a really serious injury at the moment so it was great to hear him talk so positively about how he’s working hard to get back on to the pitch and stepping up his recovery day by day.

“As a player, picking up an injury like that can really affect you – especially when you’re in good form as Marland was – so I think the audience got a really good insight into his personality and strength of character.

“There’s a lot of work going on to break down some of the stigma around mental health in sport but also in workplaces around the country and that’s why we wanted to host this special event.

“Through our growing Business Club, we’re proud to be hosting topical and relevant events like this and look forward to hosting even more in 2019.”

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