St Johnstone Football Club have brought trophies and glory to the Fair City.
And Perth born or bred athletes in the worlds of track and field, swimming, tennis, rugby, hockey, golf, table tennis, snooker and badminton have all excelled at the highest level.
Boxing is arguably the last frontier.
Now Luke Bibby wants to be the man to conquer it.
After a successful amateur career that yielded several British and international successes, the former Perth Academy pupil has made the leap into the professional side of the sport.
It’s a long road to European and World belts in a boxing ring but Bibby has big aspirations.
“I’ve always talked about a summer’s night at McDiarmid Park for a fight one day,” said Bibby. “Why not?
“How good would that be? Getting the whole city behind me. It would be class.
“I don’t see why that can’t happen in a few years’ time.
“Even before that I’ll be hoping to be part of a show in Perth – the Dewar’s centre maybe.
“There’s never been a boxer for the city to get behind, especially in the professional scene.
“I’m the man to do it.
“I’ve got a good following already and that will hopefully get bigger and bigger.
“My first fight is at a dinner in Glasgow in January but I’ll have over 100 people coming to that even this early in my career.
“The feedback was great as soon as the event was announced.
“To get a response like that for a dinner – at a time of year when it can be a struggle to find the money – bodes really well.”
No second thoughts on pro decision
The timing of the amateur to pro switch is always part inexact science, part gamble – especially when you’re on the Boxing Scotland programme, improving year on year and staying on track for selection for the next Commonwealth Games, as Bibby was.
“It’s been on my mind for a while to be honest,” he said.
“I wanted to make sure I got as much experience as I could in the amateurs – travelling across the world with the Scotland team and fighting top quality opponents.
“I’ve had a good bit of success doing that and fought in about 50 bouts.
“For a long time I’ve always seen my future in the pros, though.
“The time was definitely right to go for it.
“It was a case of either stay amateur until the next Commonwealth Games or make the leap now.
“By the time the next Commonwealth Games come around I’ll be 26.
“The thought of turning pro at 26 didn’t appeal. I want to be fighting for the British title by that age.
“I don’t want to be one of those boxers who hangs around the amateurs too long.
“It’s about having no regrets.”
Bibby has teamed up with trainer Billy Nelson, who was in Ricky Burns’ corner as he earned world star status.
“Billy’s been there and done it,” he said.
“He’s guided people to world titles in the past and that’s where I see myself going.
“There’s no-one better for the job in Scotland.
“He was more than happy to take me and sees the potential I’ve got.
“Whenever I’m not in Glasgow I’ll keep ticking over at the Perth Railway Boxing Club.
“But I’m through the west five days a week so when I’m back home I’m usually resting.
“You only get one shot at a career like this and I’ll be giving it everything.
“I’m confident it will work out but if it doesn’t I’ve got the rest of my life to find a Plan B. Right now there isn’t one.”
Bibby added: “Alex Arthur and Ricky Burns are two big influences for all the up and coming Scottish boxers.
“They’re world champions who give a lot back to the sport.
“Obviously Josh Taylor is somebody I look up to as well.
“He’s a phenomenal fighter who had a good amateur background.
“I’ve not met him yet but he’s an inspiration.
“There’s Willie Limond as well.
“Scotland isn’t short of role models and I’d love to join that list.”
More often than not when you dig into a boxer’s back-story there are family roots in the sport.
Not in Bibby’s case, though.
“I used to play football with Letham and Scone Thistle when I was a kid,” he recalled.
“But I wanted to be involved in a sport where I would only have myself to blame if things didn’t go well.
“In football you rely on other players on the pitch. Boxing is all about me.
“I persuaded my dad to take me to the Railway Club when I was 15. I got the bug straight away and I’ve never looked back.
“The first time you spar makes or breaks you. For me, I loved it.”
The lightweight’s first fight will be on a Burns Supper Crowne Plaza event on Friday, January 26.
The identity of his opponent is unknown at this point but the attributes Bibby intends to bring to the ring over the next few years are clear.
Let’s get ready to Rumble 💥🥊 https://t.co/G9rdciRccf
— Perth Railway Boxing (@PerthRailway) November 24, 2023
“I’m confident my style will really suit being professional,” he said.
“I was a good amateur but I believe it’s in the pro ranks that I can really excel.
“My style, my fitness, my ability, my will to win and my amateur pedigree will all come into play when I step up the levels.
“I’m an aggressive southpaw counter-puncher with a high work-rate.
“Hopefully that will make me very exciting to watch.
“The first year will be all about keeping busy, gaining experience.
“Then hopefully by the end of it I can be getting close to title fights.
“I’ll want to push and push and push but that’s where somebody like Billy will use his experience and put the reins on me.”
Bibby will have Perth Railway Club’s gold and black colours on his shorts to “pay homage to where I’ve come from”.
All that’s missing is a nickname.
“I’ve never really had one,” said Bibby. “Nothing has stuck. So I’m open to suggestions.
“I’ll throw it out there for folk in Perth to help me out!”