Amateur boxer died from 'irreversible' brain injury

Jubal Reji Kurian
Jubal Reji Kurian suffered a blow to his face which knocked him unconscious [PA Media]

A 23-year-old amateur boxer died after a charity fight left him with an "irreversible" brain injury, an inquest heard.

Jubal Reji Kurian was knocked unconscious and fell backwards from a punch to his face on 25 March 2023 at Harvey Hadden Sports Village in Bilborough, Nottingham.

He suffered bleeding on both sides of his brain, the inquest was told.

Dr Sarah Linford, a critical care consultant for Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, told the inquest no medical assistance could have saved him.

The inquest heard Mr Kurian had appeared to be winning the fight, which was hosted by Ultra White Collar Boxing, a Derby-based boxing club organised by Ultra Events.

Mr Kurian's parents flew from United Arab Emirates to Nottingham following his injury, the inquest at Nottingham Coroner's Court was told.

Their son's life support was turned off at the Queen's Medical Centre, in Nottingham, four days after the match.

He had suffered bleeding on both sides of his brain and swelling, which killed his brain stem, the inquest was told.

Dr Linford said: "The first scan showed evidence of bilateral subdural haemorrhage on the surface of the brain which contributes to pressure.

"I think that Jubal's brain injury was a result of blunt force trauma and global oedema.

"He did not make any efforts to break his fall so the assumption is that he was unconscious. I suspect he was not breathing on impact to the floor."

Dr Linford said no signs of him waking, coughing, or breathing were present in the few days they waited for his parents to arrive.

There were no fractures found to Mr Kurian's face or skull and no damage discovered to his brain vessels.

'No concerns around ability'

He was fighting Ian David, 47, who was also an inexperienced boxer, the inquest heard.

Mr David offered "sincere condolences" to Mr Kurian's family during the inquest.

He said: "I'm no Muhammad Ali, I do not expect to knock someone out. I was expecting him to get back up and finish the round, shake hands, and go for a beer.

"He left not in a way I expected, so I was not a winner that night."

Mr David said he "came out swinging and throwing from round one, which caught me off guard".

He added: "He got tired and my shots were hitting him more. Things started to swing my way.

"I caught him with one right shot. I was then sent to my corner to wait further instruction."

Coroner Laurinda Bower heard from Ultra Events director Jonathan Leonard.

He said boxers had to take part in free training sessions in eight weeks leading up to the fight so coaches could match opponents.

Mr Kurian attended 22 training sessions in this period, and his opponent Mr David took part in 20 to 21, the inquest heard.

Mr Leonard said: "There were no concerns around Jubal's ability or around his fitness, he had gone to lots of training.

"I have watched the video [of the match] and it looks like a fair bout. There was no ability discrepancy."

The inquest continues.

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