'I'm glad I made Hull proud': Luke Campbell on his Olympic gold medal win
Luke Campbell promised his son Leo he would bring home an Olympic gold medal - and he didn't disappoint. James Campbell spoke to him after his momentous victory.
HIS dream was always to bring back gold to his son and his city.
Today, Olympic champion Luke Campbell returns home to present his gold medal to his two-year-old son Leo.
Luke, 24, is the pride of Hull as the city celebrates the achievements of a boy from Hessle Road who realised his dreams of Olympic glory.
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And he is still coming to terms with the magnitude of his achievements, which will inspire a generation of young people.
Draped in the Union Flag, watched by around 30 members of his family, including his mum Jill and fiancée Lynsey Kraanen, Luke said: "I can't believe it, I really can't. I appreciate all the support here and at home in Hull.
"This is a day I've dreamt of for a long time and to actually be here and have achieved it, I'm lost for words.
"It means everything to my family and my city and I'm glad I've been able to make them proud of me."
Luke told how he kept his head as the pressure mounted throughout the three-round fight with Irish fighter John Joe Nevin.
"My plan was to let my punches flow and listen to my coaches," he said. "I just had to carry on with what I was doing and not be silly."
Luke has battled back to the very top of his sport, becoming the world's best bantamweight boxer, after his career hung by a thread just three years ago.
"It was a real low point for me in 2009," he said. "I'd had my best year in 2008 then the system changed and different coaches came in, and the whole of 2009 was a misery for me.
"You could say, at one point, I was looking to get out of there. I didn't want to box any more because I didn't like that environment.
"Then Rob McCracken came in and changed the system and I felt very confident under the new team.
"I'd been to the worst place in my career and after that, what else was I afraid of?
"I went out there and enjoyed what I was doing.
"I had 23 unbeaten fights in a row, I got better and better and I got myself here today."
The young boxer, who has captured the hearts of the British public with his down-to-earth and likeable nature, is still trying to find the words to explain what his victory means.
"I'm overwhelmed by it all, it seems a bit of a blur," he said. "It's everything I've ever worked for. I've achieved my goal, I'm speechless.
"It's a moment I've dreamed about most of my life, daydreamed about, visualised. All the hard work and dedication was all for the Olympic Games, and to achieve a gold medal is fantastic, the best of the best.
"The support I've had is just fantastic – from Great Britain and from my home town, Hull. There is brilliant support there. I'm so, so happy."
More on Luke Campbell's Olympic glory
Luke vowed to bring the gold medal back for his son Leo.
Lynsey, who is six months' pregnant with their second child, admits Luke is already a hero to Leo.
She said: "Since Leo was born, Luke has never lost a fight. He is always a winner to Leo. He never stops saying 'Daddy's a winner'.
"Luke has been a hero for Leo from the day he was born.
"Luke is really looking forward to seeing his son again. He promised to bring back the gold and that is exactly what he has done."
Lynsey is still coming to terms with Luke's achievement.
She said: "There is no words to explain how I feel. I think Luke's face said it all.
"He has fulfilled beyond his dream. He has done everything he could do and more.
"It's hard looking back on Saturday. One second I was so happy and the next I was in floods of tears.
"It is only beginning to sink in now.
"About 10,000 people had watched the fight at Hyde Park and people recognised us.
"We were on the tube and people began chanting 'Luke's mum'."
The support from the city has helped spur Luke on.
Lynsey said: "Luke knows everyone in Hull is behind him, but he hasn't been able to experience it.
"It will be an amazing experience on Tuesday when everyone comes together to give him the welcome he deserves.
"We want to thank everyone back home for their support."
Luke will take time out to decide on his future.
Lynsey said: "I think everyone is asking if Luke will turn professional but I don't think he even knows yet.
"The world is his oyster and, whatever he decides, we will be 100 per cent behind him."
Luke's mum Jill believes Luke will take heart from the support he has received from the city.
She said: "The amount of support from the people of Hull has been phenomenal. We are amazed at the number of texts and e-mails we've received.
"Luke doesn't realise the extent of the support and he will be overwhelmed when he returns.
"Luke will never forget where he came from."
The family are continuing to celebrate Luke's superb victory.
Jill said: "We are still on cloud nine. It's fantastic.
"We were sure he had won but you can never take anything for granted.
"I woke up the morning after laughing. I wasn't sure if I was still asleep.
"We didn't see much of him yesterday because he was doing lots of interviews.
"We will have lots of time with Luke when he comes back home.
He just needs to soak all this up, it is something that will never be repeated.
"What makes it more special is that Luke has secured his dream and not many people can say that."