Heavyweight boxer Joe Parker’s trainer has revealed his fighter had two secret surgeries on both of his elbows late last year.
Parker is to take on Anthony Joshua in a world unification title fight at Cardiff next weekend.
Kevin Barry told media today Parker had been struggling with intense pain over the past two years.
He said he'd continued to fight through it but last November he had surgery on his left elbow which was so successful that he had surgery the following week on his right elbow.
"He had numerous bone chips in his left elbow, bone growth on both sides of his elbow and also where the actual elbow socket rolls into," Barry said.
"Joe was unable to open his arm because the socket had calcified over, so the surgery was to remove all that bone to get rid of the pain that we've had to work through".
"For the first time in two years, he's pain free."
Parker's surgeon Mr Craig Ball of Ascot Hospital says it's unusual how quickly he's recovered.
"A very unusual thing that I've observed is how quickly he was able to get better afterwards and obviously the aim was to improve the range of motion," Mr Ball said.
"But more importantly in my professional opinion, I think by losing that impingement pain that he would have, that will almost certainly give him a little bit more speed and probably power with his punch too."