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Isle stars aim to be a musical knockout

Former boxing champion Chris Woollas, 39, of Belton, and his friend and former wrestler Ray Robinson, 62, of Keadby, have been entertaining residents of retirement homes with their vocal talents.  Picture: Liz Mockler E1496LM

Former boxing champion Chris Woollas, 39, of Belton, and his friend and former wrestler Ray Robinson, 62, of Keadby, have been entertaining residents of retirement homes with their vocal talents. Picture: Liz Mockler E1496LM

A HEAVYWEIGHT duo are hoping to prove to be a knockout of a different kind after hitting the karaoke instead of the canvass.

Former champion wrestler Ray Robinson has formed an unlikely musical duo with his best friend – a former champion boxer – and together the pair are hoping their crooning will be a smash hit raising money for charity.

Their performances of songs by the likes of Englebert Humperdinck and Dean Martin have been so popular at parties and karaoke nights they now want to go and perform at residential homes.

And after they sing, they will give a talk about the worlds of professional boxing and wrestling. Proceeds will be handed over the Lindsey Lodge Hospice which provides care to people from the Isle of Axholme.

“It all started out as a bit of fun,” said Ray, of Woodgarr Avenue, Keadby.

“I was at a friend’s party and there was a karaoke machine and he said to me to have a go.

“I was adamant I didn’t want to but he kept on saying ‘come on, you’ve got to’.

“So I went up and started singing Frank Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ with him, and then he cleared off and left me to it. I was on the stage and there must have been about 100 people there and they were all clapping.”

Ray said he did not sing again for a while but then performed at a karaoke session at a pub in Thorne.

The 62-year-old - who notched up 715 matches during in his fighting career – runs a professional gym from his premises.

His friend Chris, 39, from Epworth, trains at the gym and after Ray installed a karaoke machine there the two decided to sing together.

“We do all the old numbers,” said Ray. “I certainly didn’t think about earning any money from it until I got a call from a friend asking me to sing a few Jim Reeves numbers at a party at Keadby Club.

“I said I would only do it if Chris sang with me and he asked me how much we wanted paying. I said we didn’t want anything, but he was insistent, so I said whatever he paid us we would give to Lindsey Lodge.

“After that, we thought we could go round and sing for old people’s groups and after we have finished singing we could talk to them about boxing and wrestling.”

Ray and Chris recently presented Lindsey Lodge with a cheque for £50.

Anyone who wants to book the pair should call Ray on 01724 783657.

 

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