Boxer Gary Mason dies in cycling collision in London

Former colleague, Ralph Dellor, said people would remember Mason fondly

Former British boxing champion Gary Mason has died in a cycling crash in south London.

Mason, 48, was on his bicycle in Sandy Lane South, Wallington, on Thursday morning when he was involved in a collision with a van.

The retired fighter was pronounced dead at the scene.

A man has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by careless driving and bailed until March pending further inquiries.

Start Quote

I had a lot of respect for the guy”

End Quote Frank Bruno Former world heavyweight boxing champion

The 43-year-old, who was driving a white Vauxhall "combi" van, had stopped at the scene.

Mason is the first person to die in a cycling incident in London in 2011, according to Transport for London.

He fought 38 times as a professional between 1984 and 1994, with 37 wins.

His only defeat was against future world heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis at Wembley Arena.

Mason was British champion from January 1989 to March 1991 when he lost to Lewis.

The scene of the accident Mason was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash in Wallington on Thursday morning

He led a varied life after his boxing career, with a spell as a pundit for Sky Sports and a brief venture with rugby league side London Broncos.

Former world heavyweight boxing champion Frank Bruno said through his agent: "I'm very sorry about his death, particularly the circumstances of how it happened.

"Both of us were plying our trade at an early age and I had a lot of respect for the guy."

Boxing promoter Frank Maloney described Mason as "one of the nice guys of boxing".

"Even if things were going wrong for him, he cheered other people up," he said.

The fight with Lewis ended Mason's career, and Maloney added. "One man's career ended and one man's career went forward.

London cycling deaths

  • 2007 - 15 deaths
  • 2008 - 15 deaths
  • 2009 - 13 deaths
  • 2010 - 10 deaths

"Gary was a good heavyweight but he was around at the wrong time, with the likes of Lennox Lewis and Frank Bruno."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "Officers were alerted at about 6.15am yesterday to a van in collision with a bicycle on Sandy Lane South, near the junction with Woodcote Road, Wallington.

"The cyclist, aged 48 years, was pronounced dead at the scene."

A post-mortem examination will be held at St Helier Hospital mortuary and an inquest will be opened at Croydon Coroner's Court.

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