Charlie Sims is best known for his stint on British reality TV show ‘The Only Way is Essex’.
But he’s also a hugely successful agent who manages the likes of Conor Benn, Joe Cordina and John Ryder.
His father, Tony, works the corner for the above trio. So it’s no surprise that Sims ended up involved in the family business. After all, boxing is in his blood.
It’s something that he shares with Benn who is the son of Nigel Benn, the former world champion who famously knocked out Iran Barkley in 1990, and shared the ring with other such legends as Steve Collins, Chris Eubank and Michael Watson.
Sims first met Benn at his dad’s gym a few years ago and the two have since become close friends, with the latter subsequently appointing the former as his manager to advise him on every aspect of his career.
“I remember walking into the gym probably six or seven years ago,” he recalled in an exclusive interview with GiveMeSport.com.
“And Nigel was there with my dad, they are old friends, and Nigel had just come down to see my dad and see the gym.
“This was the old Matchroom gym. And Conor was there. Conor was young, he was like this 18, 19 year old dude, he wasn’t as heavily tattooed as he is today.
“But he had a few tats, you could tell he was a bit of a bad boy. And then, you know, he was a lot leaner back then as well. He wasn’t quite as filled out as he is now.
“I remember him just being excited, he was always game to just get in there with anyone, I think he may have even actually sparred that day with some of the pros. He was really game to get in and impress people and show people he can actually do this. So even back then he had the belief that he wanted to be someone and do something in the sport.”
Benn, 25, will lock horns with bitter rival Chris Eubank Jr on October 6 at London’s iconic O2 Arena.
There have been some suggestions that Eubank Jr, who is seven years his senior, isn’t taking it all that seriously.
However, Sims says he isn’t buying it one bit.
Sims added: “Chris is trying to play games but Conor isn’t fooling for it.
“I think he’s just trying to get into Conor’s head. I don’t think Conor is bothered by it at all. Conor has taken a whole different route.
“Chris is an athlete and we know that so it’s not something that we’re taking lightly. He keeps himself in shape all year round. We know how healthy the lifestyle he lives.
“Alright he likes to go out and have a good time and he was eating KFC the other day from what I could see from photos but he’ll be in the gym that evening or he’ll be in the gym first thing in the morning.
“This isn’t a joke to him. He knows this is a big fight. There’s a lot on the line for him as well in terms of his family name and his legacy so he’ll be taking this seriously.”
Asked which one of them is under the most pressure, Sims replied: “I think Chris and I’ll tell you why.
“When you look at the history of the two fights, Eubank has always been on top of Benn, even though people thought Benn won the last fight it came out a draw so Benn never actually got his hand raised.
“He needs to win this fight, because if he doesn’t win this fight, his career is over. Just getting a shot at a world title is never going to happen for him at middleweight ever again. So he absolutely knows his career is on the line.
“And then I would say, he’s stepping in there with the smaller man, naturally the smaller man. So if he gets beat, one outboxed, two knocked out, it’s not going to go down well with him personally and his family.
“So I think if you look at the pressure, it’s all down to Chris, really. And I think he’s putting himself under a lot of pressure to make weight. He’s spoke about it before.
“I don’t know if he really thought about the weight too much when he accepted the offer but it’s here now so he’s got to do it. Making weight isn’t going to be a problem for Conor at all. He’s actually just putting on more muscle mass at the moment just to make sure that he’s strong enough in the fight.”