Echo columnist Chris Billam-Smith writes about the issue of racism, as well as coming back from shoulder surgery in 2015...

It is only right to start this week’s article talking about a huge matter at hand.

Racism is still very present in our world. I for one am not as educated as I should or could be.

I aim to educate myself further on such pressing matters and I urge you to do the same and help bring everyone together as one.

We are all humans, regardless of any differences we may have. Love one another and take care of one another.

Bournemouth Echo:

It’s now June. The month in which five years ago I was able to punch again after having shoulder surgery in January 2015.

Coincidentally, I’m finally going to do some pad work next week, too!

I learned a lot about myself whilst I was injured, as I have in this period of uncertainty we have been going through.

Before turning pro, I had to have a tendon in my shoulder shortened as it kept subluxing (partially dislocating) when I was boxing.

I now have a very prominent scar on right shoulder which I’ve nicknamed ‘The Worm’.

It’s only within the past year I’ve actually had zero problems with it and have been able to throw a right hand properly without any worries, which showed in my last outing where I was able to use it to good effect.

During the six months of getting my shoulder back to a useable state, I kept fit where I could and kept my weight in check, so when I finally got back to full training I didn’t have too much work to do.

During lockdown I have drawn on those experiences and I know they’ll help me once normality resumes. It’s always important to look at the bigger picture in times like this and work towards that.

Thankfully this time round, my fiancée Mia hasn’t had to peel me off the floor of the shower! After my shoulder surgery, I’d slipped and, as my arm was in a sling, I couldn’t stop myself falling. Funny times.

Bournemouth Echo:

Thank you once again for this week’s questions.

Who is your all-time favourite Cherries player? From Isabelle Craven.

There is a few to choose from. Wade Elliot gave me many wonderful memories back when I had a season ticket as a youngster in 2002 to 2004, as did Brian Stock with his deadly set-pieces.

And then we have more recent players who have been vital in the club’s meteoric rise, such as Steve Cook, who I’ve had the pleasure to meet and talk to on a few occasions and is an all-round great man.

But just pipping those three to the post would be Fletch, with what he’s done and given throughout the years - and what he continues to bring to the club. Also, being a mascot at his testimonial was a great experience.

Bournemouth Echo:

If you could step in the ring with any boxing legend, who would it be? From Chris Morris.

A great question that I’ve been asked a few times.

For me it would have to be Evander Holyfield. I’d regret it after!

But what an unbelievable fighter he was.

Go watch him against Riddick Bowe. He conquered cruiserweight and moved up and boxed the very best heavyweights in an era filled with greats.

Thank you to all who continue to read these articles. It means a lot.

If anyone would like to ask any questions for next week, please contact below.

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Be safe, be kind.

Peace out,