Jeff Murphy, Johnny Owen(Mainstream Publishing, Edinburgh, 2004)
A moving account of the Johnny Owen story and its aftermath from a co-producer of the outstanding TV documentary “Johnny Owen: The Long Journey”.
The documentary details the journey of Johnny’s father, Dick Owens, to Mexico, 20 years after the Matchstick Man’s death.
Owens met the boxer who ended his son’s life, the great Lupe Pintor.
The book tells some of the story of the production, interspersed with an account of Johnny’s career.
Author Murphy, who admits that he is no boxing expert, says that the work is ‘the story of Owen, not an academic work or an official biography’.
There is little new to learn about Owen’s career and the book takes some time to get into its stride.
But it comes alive when describing Pintor’s rise to greatness and the build-up to the tragic bout against the much-loved Welshman.