A BURNLEY boxing coach has admitted he was stunned to hear of the death of Gary Speed having only met him on Thursday night.

Brian Roche had taken one of his fighters to a show at the Helliwell Stadium in Warrington were Speed’s son Thomas was also on the bill.

Roche, who runs Roche Boxing Club, was in the corner of 22-year-old Atif Mushtaq for his 17th win in 22 fights against Mark Kieron while Speed was watching his son, who fights for Chester Police ABC, also win with an impressive display.

Roche said: “I was completely shocked when I heard of Gary Speed’s death.

“It really saddened me especially as I had only met him a few days before.

“I had never met him before last week in Warring-ton and had no idea he was troubled in anyway.

“He was there watching his son box and also saw my lad in action and we had a chat about boxing. What a true gent he was.

“It was terrible news to hear about someone so young with seemingly everything to live for pass away so suddenly.”