Fenech’s fighting spirit stuns Thai doctors
Boxing champion Jeff Fenech is winning the biggest fight of his life.
Speaking exclusively with The Daily Telegraph from his Bangkok hospital, Fenech revealed doctors have been stunned with his recovery from open heart surgery last Wednesday.
And while a shattered Fenech will be forced to miss his daughter Jessica's wedding in Sydney this Saturday, the triple world champ has been set up with Skype so he can watch the nuptials and reception from his Thai hospital bed.
Fenech's high powered mates have offered to fly a private jet to Thailand to collect and return the boxer to Sydney but doctor shave vetoed the plan for fear of an infection.
It is understood Fenech will spend another week in hospital and then - provided his recovery continues - be moved to a nearby hotel where he can continue treatment.
Fenech's wife, Suzee, has returned home to Sydney but will travel back to Bangkok after the wedding where she will remain until the Hall of Fame boxer is healthy enough to fly.
"I'm getting better, mate," Fenech said. "I'm in my own room which they didn't think would happen in three days. It usually takes a week. The surgeon came and couldn't believe how I had improved.
"I'm on antibiotics now to make sure there aren't any infections. My heart valve was f. ed. I've got a new one. I'm still in pain - they cut me (open) down the middle of my chest. It was keyhole.
"I haven't slept for days which is a pain in the arse but I'm heaps, heaps better. They are scared of me flying and getting in infection."
Asked was the pneumonia he contracted also improving, Fenech said: "I think so, I hope, so, everything is good."
Cricket legend Shane Warne and horse trainer David Freedman have been among the sporting stars texting support to Fenech, as has WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman.
Former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson has stayed in touch virtually daily.
Fenech has urged his family not to postpone the wedding given there are 400 guests expected, some travelling from overseas.
"We have set up Skype for him on his iPad," Suzee said. "As Jessica walks down the aisle, Jeff will be watching the whole thing; the church, the reception. He will be part of it.
"Even if he got home, he can't stand up. There is no chance he can get home. He has just had open heart surgery.
"The support has been amazing. Everyone is behind him. I will get back there the Monday or Tuesday (after the wedding) and stay there until it is time for him to come home."
Fenech had flown to Thailand for a training camp with ten of his young boxers before being rushed to hospital by ambulance after contracting pneumonia.
While there, doctors found a valve to his heart was blocked and required urgent surgery.
"He still has a long way to go but the doctors are saying how happy they are at how quick he is recovering," Suzee said.
"The more he gets up and about the more the fluid will start clearing up.
"His temperature has dropped so things are starting to get back under control. It was just crazy. Never in a lifetime did I think this would happen. I can't believe it. He looks good now compared to before the operation.
"He wasn't getting any blood or oxygen to the brain so now I understand why he wasn't making sense. Hopefully he comes home sooner rather than later."