Akinfenwa: The world’s heaviest striker turns to wrestling

Adebayo Akinfenwa became a football icon as the world’s heaviest striker. His stocky physique – his weight was estimated at 102 kilos – caused a sensation wherever he went.

In four years he went from being unemployed to earning the praise of Jurgen Klopp himself. At Wycombe Wanderers, where he joined in 2016 from AFC Wimbledon, he is a legend.

He made 250 appearances for Wycombe, won two promotions – from the Fourth Division to the Second Division – scored 60 goals and laid on 40 assists before hanging up his boots last summer.

Akinfenwa, a big Liverpool fan, is now facing a new challenge. The former Barry Town, Leyton Orient, Doncaster Rovers, Swansea City and Millwall player, among others, is turning to wrestling. In fact, he plans to make his wrestling debut next week.

“I was always asked when I was coming to retirement what I was looking to do and the response was always new experiences. I was lucky enough to do the thing I love for 22 years but it was a profession. When you retire, it’s just freedom and experiences,” he said in an interview with the Daily Mail.

“It’s always been in the background because of my love for wrestling. I’ve known [English professional wrestler] Anthony Ogogo for a while, years. We came across each other when he was a boxer and stayed in contact and the wrestling thing never went away.

“He unfortunately couldn’t box anymore and he found that love with wrestling and he hit me up and said: “Listen, you want to try a few bits?”

‘When you find something that you enjoy it makes it a little bit easier. But then the mindset is to try new things and if it lands, it lands. I enjoy it, I’ve enjoyed the workouts, I enjoy that it’s intense.”

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