Scott Gammer (b. 1976) was a late starter in the professional game who ended Wales’ long wait for a British heavyweight title.
After a long and successful amateur career, the Pembroke Dock man turned to the paid ranks in 2002. ‘The Hammer’ went unbeaten for four year as he built a strong record, but a lack of power at the highest level belied his formidable nickname.
The highlight of the Pembrokeshire man’s career came at the Carmarthen Showground in June 2006 when he faced Mark Krence for the vacant British crown. Gammer stopped his opponent in the ninth to become the seventh Welshman to wear the coveted belt, and the first since David Pearce in 1984.
Jack Petersen, Tommy Farr, Johnny Williams, Joe Erskine and Neville Meade were the other names on the list.
The new champion defended successfully against Micky Steeds at Port Talbot’s Afan Lido, and the possibility of big fights was opening up for him.
In December 2006 he saw Olympic champion Audley Harrison wallop former Mike Tyson conqueror Danny Williams in three rounds. Gammer could have pursued a big-money fight with Harrison in London, but instead chose to face the loser Williams closer to home, with a 1,200-seat sell-out guaranteed at the Cwrt Herbert Sports Centre, Neath.
Before that fight would happen, Harrison imploded against Michael Sprott with a third-round loss, opening opportunities for the victor that could have been Gammer’s.
Meanwhile, the enigmatic Williams – who had been flabby and out of shape against Harrison – weighed in for the Gammer bout at 16st 4lbs, his lightest since he made his professional debut in 1995.
The champion, though, had seemed to think that he needed to bulk up to face Williams and he came in at 17st 1lb, the heaviest weight of his career to date.
Gammer had thereby thrown away his greatest assets, his speed and energy, and Williams looked sharper throughout before stopping his opponent in the ninth.
A deflated Gammer would get more shots at titles, but he was always ‘the opponent’ and never looked likely to return to the big time.
His first fight after the Williams defeat – a low-key win over Paul King in Neath – would prove to be the Pembrokeshire man’s final victory.
Gammer lost a British title eliminator against John McDermott, then flirted with retirement as he spent a year out of the ring.
He returned for a shot at the vacant European title against Francesco Pianeta in Berlin, where he retired in the eighth with a hand injury, before being stopped in six by Robert ‘the Nordic Nightmare’ Helenius in Helsinki.
His last professional fight was in an October 2009 Prizefighter tournament. The format should have suited Gammer’s fast-and-accurate style, but he looked lacklustre in losing to Coleman Barrett in the opening round of bouts.