Boxing: Blackwell says recovery from coma after knockout by Eubank Jr 'toughest fight'

LONDON (AFP) - Nick Blackwell said he was in the "toughest fight of his life" after waking from an induced coma following his British middleweight title defeat by Chris Eubank Jr.

The 25-year-old collapsed shortly after his 10th-round stoppage loss at London's Wembley Arena on March 26.

He was then taken to the capital's St Mary's Hospital with a bleed on the skull before doctors placed him in an induced coma.

Tuesday saw Blackwell make his first public comment since the bout as he posted a message thanking well-wishers for their support on his brother Daniel's Facebook account.

"Just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who has been there for me, all my friends and family, those who wished me well and those who raised money for me," Blackwell said.

"I feel truly blessed and have massive love for you all. I couldn't have done it without you.

"It's been the toughest fight of my life and you all have made it that bit easier.

"On to rehab now, progress is getting better by the day. Big love to you all, Nick."

During the fight Chris Eubank Sr, the father of the new champion, could be heard telling his son to stop hitting Blackwell's head.

His ringside instructions were especially poignant as, 25 years ago, Eubank Sr stopped Michael Watson in a world title fight that left his beaten opponent with irreparable brain damage and partially paralysed.