Liverpool lightweight Paddy Pimblett has revealed he learned a friend had taken his own life ahead of his final outing at the Ultimate Fighting Championship on Saturday.
Pimblett then urged men not to suffer in silence in a heartfelt interview following his win over American Jordan Leavitt at London’s O2 Arena.
The 27-year-old defeated the Las Vegas native with a second-round submission.
Pimblett said in his post-fight interview, “I woke up Friday morning at 4am with a message that a friend of mine back home had committed suicide. It was five hours before my weigh-in.
“So Ricky, this is for you.
“But, there’s a stigma in this world that men can’t talk about. Look, if you’re a man and you’ve got weight on your shoulders and you think the only way to solve it is to kill yourself, talk to somebody, talk to anybody.
“People would rather – I know I would rather have my mate cry on my shoulder than go to his funeral next week.
“So please get rid of this stigma and men start talking.”