Gary Sweeney “I’m Back In The Swing Of Things

When i hear the the old Cliche “Boxing is in my DNA” i pass it off as a template answer , something to fill in a blank ….well that was until i caught up with Irish Cruiserweight Gary Sweeney (23) . Gary comes from a real fighting family with four older brothers being Amateur Champions in Mayo Ireland , with his brother/mentor and now trainer Micheal Sweeney also being a former professional but Gary says it all goes back to his Grandfather .

“My Grandfather never liked talking to us about boxing because he never wanted us fighting and stuff , but he was a bareknuckle boxing champion . He didn’t want us getting into bareknuckle game , he wanted us to just get into the ring and start  boxing “

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Gary’s family comes from a traveling background which seems to go hand in hand in boxing nowadays with stars like Billy Joe Saunders and the Fury’s being some of the biggest name in the UK boxing today . Embarrassingly boxing is not the only thing that seems to go hand in hand with the Traveling community .

“My father used to box back in his day but when he finished he opened an amateur boxing club due to discrimination because he was from a traveling background . So we opened our own boxing club and from there i won 7 ameatur titles.”

Gary was inspired to get into boxing after watching his brother’s . Going to watch them in tournaments at eight years old he decided he wanted to have a go at the sport for himself .

“I remember when i was eight years old i remember i would get hit a punch and i would just smile . Once i was in boxing i just loved it “

Like any young Sportsperson the biggest fear is injury and in 2017 Gary found that out when a back injury kept him out for most of the year , which halted the momentum he had been building .

“It was very frustrating , i have lost 13 months of boxing and the full time I’ve been watching all these fights on TV and on Youtube and i was just eating myself . I had all these injuries with my back and i broke my hand so i had to just sit back and watch all these fights . Then finally christmas was gone and i got myself a fight , and now I’m back in the swing of things ”

“I was meant to go for surgery before my last fight but the surgery didn’t take place so what they done was drain it so its still a bit sore but it’s good enough to get me back in the ring , until i can get the surgery in the summer” .

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Gary will be fighting in a six rounder on the MTK London card on March 3rd and although Gary doesn’t know who his opponents is yet , he is expecting it to be someone who will put him through his paces so he is coming over to Scotland to get some sparring with British Title challenger Stephen Simmons .

“Two weeks before my fight i will be Scotland and I’m going to get a good hard week with Simmons . You couldn’t ask for any better than that , going out and getting rounds of sparring with these guys is good for me. I am part of the MTK Global team and they have me out sparring all over the place which is just brilliant “

Fighting on this MTK London card will give Gary the opertunity of some big exposure in a small hall context due to there partnership with IFL TV who stream the cards on youtube .

“This card will be streamed again on youtube , which is brilliant . Last time they got over 140,000 viewers . To be on any sort of TV is brilliant but anybody can get this for free.

The Full Uncut Interview Click Here

We would just like to thank Gary Sweeney for taking the time out to come and have a chat with us and we are looking forward to seeing him back in the ring . For tickets to the show Saturday 3rd March 2018 Ticket hotline 07876 238286 Ticket prices Tiered seating £40 Ringside tables with waitress service £60 / £70 Doors open 4.30pm . 

Steven Donnell

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Who Was Looking Out For Ohara ?

Boxing can be an unrewarding , cutthroat business where you need to get yourself noticed . For young fighters it is imperative they surround themselves with the right people , that they find a manger/advisor and promoter that know boxing inside out and have the boxers best interests at heart .Image result for ohara davies

Ohara Davies is a man who divides opinion up and down the country by playing the pantomime villain . I have followed his career since he won the English title in 2016 . He has always been someone who’s excited me in the ring but in the past couple of years as his stock has risen inside the ring we have seen him become a personality outside the ring , which has turned me off to him . Now i am not naive , it is very clear to me that Davies has been advised to play the bad man which has been a sales tactic in boxing since the sport began, a tactic that keeps you relevant and can help sell tickets to your fans and haters alike . In today’s ultra connected world where everything is instantly out there and accessible this tactic is ever more risky as its a fine line between cocky and down right offensive and in today’s overly sensitive world that is a very dangerous game to play . A few months ago he had a go at Paddy Barnes Wife which for me is disgusting and immature . Before that he was calling the people of Liverpool minimum wage peasants causing massive uproar , but all the time being rewarded with big pay days and slots on big shows , reportedly earning over £100,000 for the Josh Taylor fight , but now it has all turned a bit sour for Ohara . At the beginning of January Ohara Davies sent out a tweet which got him caught up in the murky waters of Liverpool’s city wide Anti Sun newspaper campaign , which go’s back to the newspaper lies about victims of the Hillsborough Disaster . The backlash was massive and in my opinion well over the top . We seen fellow Matchroom stars like Tony Bellew turn against Ohara, Eddie Hearn released a statement and dropped from the Matchroom “British Beef Card” in London

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Who Was Looking Out For Ohara ?

Let’s not make any excuses for Ohara Davies , he is a grown man and every man must take responsibility for his actions . There are people close to Ohara paid to guide this young mans career who should be having a good look at themselves , people like Ohara’s Manger/Advisor and former TOWIE reality show star Charlie Sims . Whilst Sims (24) was laughing along and no doubt egging Ohara on , the rest of us could see this train wreck coming . He has either advised Ohara to adopt this persona or he has failed to get Ohara to tone it down , which has now cost Ohara the chance to fight on a card in his hometown and seen him barred from Tony Sims gym , not to mention the purse money lost . I think Eddie Hearn has missed opportunities to ask this lad to tone it down . At the press conference before Davie vs Derry Mathews fight in Liverpool you could see the £££ in Eddie Hearns eyes as Ohara insulted a full city , and made the bout a grudge match . This time he’s touched on something that can damage the reputation of Hearn’s brand and that’s why Hearn had to act . Time after time Ohara Davies has been rewarded for playing close to the line of what is acceptable behaviour so to now ostracise the lad when he goes over the line seems convenient for some . Hopefully Ohara will realise he has to get people around him who are there to look after him and his interests . Can he come back from this ? , yeah i think he will but you wont see him on any cards in the North West for a while thats for sure .

Steven Donnell

DJayBoxing Award

It is that time of the year where we look back over what boxing has given to the fans over the past year and we pick our best bits and top performers of 2017 , and i must say what a year we have to choose from .

Fighter of The Year

There have been some outstanding performers this year in the ring . Vasyl Lomachenko has made guys like Nicholas Walters and Rigo quit after taking them apart physically and mentally and ending the year in most peoples P4P top 3 . Terrance Crawford is another who has had an outstanding year becoming the undisputed champion at 140lbs after stopping Julius Indongo , which seen Terrance Crawford finally get the credit he deserves from the boxing world . Another who had a stand out year was Mikey Garcia who started the year with a bang winning the WBC lightweight championship with one of the Knock Outs of the year against Dejan Zlaticanin , made more impressive with the fact that Garcia was coming back from a 2 year lay-off , then in his next fight beat Adrian Broner at light welterweight .

So who is my Fighter of the year ? Well for me it can only be one person and that’s Sor Rungvisai . At the start of of 2017 the man widely regarded as the P4P best fighter in the world was Roman Gonzalez , a four weight world champion who was 48-0 before he met Thailand’s Rungvisai . Many thought Roman would have to much for the challenger but those thoughts where soon dismissed as Rungvisai sent the champion to the canvas early on . Both men battled to the very end but the judges had seen enough to award the Rungvisai the win and give Gonzalez his first ever loss as a pro . Fast forward six months and the pair where at it again in the rematch , again most had picked Roman Gonzalez to get his revenge and again Rungvisai proved the doubters wrong , and this time in emphatic fashion . He didn’t just beat Gonzalez this time , this time he Ko’d the Nicaraguan in emphatic style . Well done Srisaket Sor Rungvisai and i for one cannot wait to see what 2018 brings for him .

Fight of The Year

In 2017 we seen some of the biggest and best fights in years being made , fights like GGG/Canelo Garcia/Thurman even the highly anticipated rematch between Ward/Kovalev but the none of them could hold a candle to my winner .

Back in April we seen Anthony Joshua face his biggest test to date when he took on Former World Champion Wladimir Klitschko infront of a sold out Wembley stadium . The Heavyweight division has not been a division renowned for classic fights in recent memory but that was all about to change . Klitschko now at 42 years old and coming off a 18 month layoff after his shock defeat to Tyson Fury had us all wondering what he had left , well we where not wondering for long . From the off we seen a more mobile Klitschko than in the Fury fight , bouncing on his toes and using the full ring . Joshua was working the jab well in the early rounds but he was being forced to work every minute of every round , something the IBF Champion wasn’t used to . Joshua sent Wlad to the canvas in the fifth as the signs looked to be there that AJ could be on the brink of putting this legend away relatively early but that wasn’t to be the case . Klitschko picked himself up and really started turning the screw on Joshua , who was looking to be feeling the pace . In the Sixth it was more of the same from Klitschko who returned the favour and sent AJ down for the first time in his pro career . The signs looked ominous for AJ who was staggering around the ring and clinging on for the next few rounds , this fight really did look to have swung right round in Wlad’s favour . Joshua did start to stem the flow and as the balance of the fight evened out again it looked as though this one would need to be decided by the judges but that wasn’t to be the case . In the eleventh Joshua had fully recovered , and timed Klitschko coming in with a fantastic upper cut which seen the Wlad go into survival mode , heaven only knows how he stayed up , but he couldn’t survive for much longer as AJ sent him down for the second time , Klitschko did get up but the ref stopped the fight not long after ……what fight …..what a win for AJ .AJ vs Klitschko

Prospect of The Year

For me this is my favourite part , picking a young fighter who has set himself apart from the rest , showing he has the potential to push on to bigger things in 2018 .

There has been one young prospect who has impressed me above all the rest and that is Edinburgh’s Jason Easton . It has been a massive year for Easton (26) with three fights , each harder than the last .The first of the trio was against a Zoltan Szabo and Jason wasted no time in dispatching the Hungarian , stopping him in the second round which is all the more impressive when you think it took Robbie Davies Jnr nine rounds to stop Szabo . Up next was Steve Jamoye for the IBO Intercontinental on the Josh Taylor/Ohara Davies undercard . After a tricky start Jason took control of the fight showing some real grit where other mentally weak boxers might have crumbled , getting his reward by stopping the tough Jamoye in the the ninth round , a win which has seen Cyclone snap up Easton . Jason Defended his IBO Intercontinental title against Josef Zahradnik of the Czech Republic. At a packed Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh the crowd went wild for Jason as he outboxed and outfoxed his opponent whilst protecting a cut above his eye . Jason showed a maturity and that lessons had been learned from the Jamoye fight . When you think of the progression and opponents Easton has took on in 2017 you have to sit back and admire him as there aren’t that many 11-0 prospects taking the kind of fights and learning the kind of lessons he’s learning , i think 2018 could see big things happen for Jason Easton . Easton vs Jamoye MUST WATCH

Trainer of The Year

Trainer of the year is a is a difficult category to judge as there is so many factors to consider across a few subjects . Last year i thought Shane McGuigan had a fantastic year and has also had a very good 2017 but with Carl Frampton losing to Leo Santa Cruz in January , i think that rules him out of this year , had Frampton won then he may well have got the nod from me . This Year a trainer who has impressed me is Derrick James .

Some might think this is a strange choice but when i look at how Errol Spence Jnr and Jarmell Charlo have progressed over the past year i cant see how anyone else comes close . Spence is a superb talent and had been progressing nicely since the olympics but when he got his shot at the IBF Welterweight World Title against Kel Brook in Sheffield , no one really knew what to expect from Spence as this was his biggest test to date but you wouldn’t have known by the way he took the very experienced Kel Brook apart forcing him to quit due a fractured orbital bone late in the fight . Also fighting under Jame’s watchful eye is WBC Light Middleweight Champion Jarmell Charlo who since hooking up with James has looked to assert himself on fights more , and really does look like a killer in the ring with superb KO wins over Charles Hately and Erickson Lubin , both absolutely superb wins .

BJS vs Lemieux – Preview + Prediction

BJS vs Lemieux – Preview + Prediction

The term “this fighter is at a crossroads” is a little over used in boxing but for me this really is the best way to describe the fight for both boxers when Billy Joe Saunders will defend his WBO Middleweight title against David Lemieux this weekend in Canada . For the winner of this bout lies the potential big money fight against either GGG or Canelo , for the loser i can only see them going one way ……..down .

Billy Joe Saunders:

Billy Joe Saunders (or BJS) is a man who looks to have fell in love with boxing all over again after a very troubled couple of years . Years which has seen him struggle with his weight and motivation to fight and this nearly came back to haunt the World Champion when he very luckily got a gift decision Artur Akavov in Paisley , a fight in which we attended . That fight seemed to be the wake up call BJS needed since then he has teamed up with Dominic Ingle , moving himself away from bad influences of before and doing his camps up in Sheffield , which has got him into the best shape of his career . Billy has always been a very talented boxer who uses the full ring to his advantage and with his quick hands and slick movement it sees opponents get frustrated and make mistakes which he exploits . BJS is not is not renowned for his power which could be a factor here as Lemieux will not respect what’s coming back at him so Saunders will need to make sure he’s switched on from start to finish as Lemieux can hit hit like a donkey kicks . One thing that has always raised question about BJS so his gas tank which see’s him easier to pin down in the later round of the fight which is exactly what David Lemieux will be counting on , the result of this fight could come down to how BJS manages his gas tank so keep your eye peeled for that .

David Lemieux :

David Lemieux is a massive name in Canada and has the backing to prove that , with it being rumoured that BJS will be paid $3m for going to Canada . He is a massive name for good reason as Lemieux has fantastic power in his right hand , not to say his left is weak , far from it which makes his style very fan friendly . Lemieux is a come forward fighter but that might be his undoing as he is coming up against a skilled a boxer , a style which we have seen give him problems in the past as Lemieux has a very basic upright style which seems tailor made for BJS . After his KO loss to GGG David Lemieux has worked hard to get back in position for a title shot and with his home crowd behind him and being the more powerful of the two i think that would make him favourite with the bookies in this fight , but rushing in and swinging isn’t going to work for him , i hope Lemieux can mix it up a bit .

Prediction

Although both these guys are the same age at 28 it seems that Lemieux does have more miles on the clock , pretty much due to BJS being inactive . This fight is really close to call as its a boxer against a puncher and in this case i think you have to pick Saunders but not by much . Lemieux is the bigger puncher and the more aggressive of the two but i do find his style so basic and BJS will be to elusive for him . That’s not to say this fight is a far gone conclusion , if Lemieux can trap BJS on the ropes Saunders could find himself in big trouble as Lemieux has real power . My pick is BJS to take it on the cards but I wouldn’t be surprised if Billy gets screwed on the cards also . Billy is going to have to make sure he wins this fight clearly.

Steven Donnell

“When You Work This HardYou Appreciate It More” – Lewis Paulin Interview

“When You Work This HardYou Appreciate It More” – Lewis Paulin Interview

For boxing fans it is easy to be drawn to the very top of the sport , whether it be the glitz of Las Vegas , A massive stadium fight at Wembley or even watching the glamours World Boxing Super Series , following some of the biggest names in the sport . I think it would surprise a lot of armchair boxing fan to find out that some of the best fights actually happen in sport centres and halls all around the country , right on our doorsteps . On December 16 Lewis Paulin will fight for the Scottish Super Featherweight title against Stephen Tiffney in the Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley . This fight see’s two lads from Edinburgh go head to head to see who is the best in Scotland and someones “0” has to GO and Lewis Paulin can’t wait .

“With us both coming from Edinburgh we are deffo fighting for bragging rights , we know each other , we are roughly the same age , we turned pro around the same time it makes sense for us to meet now and the winner will hopefully progress on.” 

MTK Scotland have some great card on this year but this “Christmas Cracker” did seem a little a strange as its in Paisley which is West of Scotland but the show is headlined by two fighter from the east coast .

“Yeah it is strange that its in Paisley but to be fair the venues in Edinburgh aren’t that great for boxing , Glasgow area does seem to have the better venues “

Hopefully it will be busy with i being Christmas time , I know the public response shows there is a lot of people buzzing about this fight so i think it will be a busy show and it should be a good atmosphere”

The winner of this fight could be in a great position to push on to challenge for the British Title which is currently vacant , something that Lewis has thought about .

 ” Of course i have thought about that but i can only look at one fight at a time , hopefully i can dominate Scotland and then push on to the bigger things , but that is deffo a road we would look to go down “

At the start we touched on the Glitz and Glamour at the very top end of boxing but i wanted to know what it was like for guys like Lewis who have to find the right balance of  working there family lives and work around boxing .

‘ It is difficult and it is an issue , unless you have big sponsorship and enough backing  do this full time and you don’t have to worry about working , but we aren’t all as fortunate as that . I do work full time , but my work have been really good giving me time off to travel away to England for sparring so thats helped massively and my sponsors have helped so i am appreciative of that . Hopefully after a big win i hope to get another couple of big sponsors and that would make it more likely i could go full time “

The life blood of any sport comes from the grass roots and in the cut throat world of boxing it is so hard hard to make it as there just isn’t enough money to go round . The landscape is filled with young boxers who just couldn’t get the breaks or funding and regardless of there talent have just gave up on the sport .

“Unless you are one of the lucky ones who have made it to the olympic games its very difficult to get sponsorship , those first few years are very hard . Its once you start to prove yourself thats when more sponsors want to come onboard . Right now i train before work , go to work and then train at night , you don’t get any free time . When you work that hard you will appreciate it more .  

When Lewis was starting out as a young amateur boxed for the famous Meadowbank Amateurs who has brought thru some of the best talent this country has produced , a club which is now under threat due to its home in the Meadowbank Sports Arena going thru a revamp which has seen the club evicted with nowhere to go , I asked Lewis about the full situation .

“I am pretty gutted , the Meadowbank does need refurbished but the club have effectively been made homeless which is pretty poor. The club get a lot of people through the door no they lads have to go train in other gyms which isn’t great . 

“Hopefully they get something set for all the young guys coming through” 

Lewis Paulin vs Stephen Tiffney will take place on December 16 in Paisley . For tickets get in touch with Lewis Paulin through this link or here MTK Scotland .

Full Interview Click Here

Steven Donnell

Rigo vs Loma~ Preview + Prediction

Rigo vs Loma~ Preview + Prediction

Well what a year of boxing we have had , a year packed with massive fights and a year that has made me fall in love with boxing all over again . From watching AJ pull one out the bag and stop Wladimir Klitschko to GGG and Saul Canelo Alvarez finally getting in the ring together in another fantastic fight , then there was Andre Wards controversial yet fantastic win over Sergey Kovalev in there rematch . This weekend we have a fight that has the potential to top all of the above when Guillermo Rigondeaux takes on Vasyl Lomachenko in bout which is a boxing wet dream in New Yory on Saturday night and i for one cannot wait .

Guillermo Rigondeaux or Rigo for short is a fantastic fighter who has been a casualty of his own ability . It is widely suspected that many boxers including Carl Frampton and Scott Quigg have avoided fighting Rigo , and for good reason . When it comes to skill Rigo is one of the best boxers on the planet , a man who will punish any mistakes with devastating power and accuracy helped by his superb footwork which always sees him in position to get big shots off . This counter punching style has drawn criticism from of the boxing media , with detractors like Dan Reafel who will swear flat out that Rigo is overrated and boring , which for me is crazy talk . Dan is the kind of guy who thinks walking forward is skill , he has no appreciation of the science of boxing of which Rigo is a master . If Rigo does have a flaw it could be his temperament as we seen in his last fight against Moises Flores .In that fight Rigo was really turning it on against the Mexican when inexplicably Rigo floored him a few seconds after the bell , which seen the fight result in a no contest . Rigo is also coming into this fight as the older, smaller man which could also have an impact on how this fight plays out but admittedly Rigo looked in fantastic shape at the public workouts .

Vasyl Lomachenko is the most exciting boxer in the world . A man who’s majestic footwork is an absolute pleasure to watch . He doesn’t just beat his opponents , he breaks them psychologically by outworking , outmanoeuvring and outthinking them , showboating the whole time , like we seen against Nicholas Walters which seen Walter just quit like a dog on his stool . A massive advantage Lomachenko has is that his style is so unique i really don’t see how his opponents can prepare for him in sparring . Loma is so much more than a mover tho, due to his fantastic footwork we see Lomachenko get into unusual position and unload with devastating power , which sees him score some photogenic KOs . Lomachenko has not come up against anyone near the class of Rigo before so this unique style will be put to the test which just makes this fight even more intriguing .

Prediction:

This fight has an outrageous amount of skill and boxing smarts so picking a winner is proving very difficult . I can see a positive outcome for each fighter , I wouldn’t be surprised if Rigo walked Lomachenko onto one and KO’d him, i also wouldn’t be surprised if Loma just beats Rigo down . How do I think it will go ?. I think after a quick and frantic start the pace of the fight is more than Rigo i used to . In the later rounds i think Rigo will feel everyone of those 37 years of his age which might see Lomachenko get the KO . Realistically i think Rigo will have enough street smarts to see the fight out , which will see Loma win quite convincingly on the cards , maybe after a shaky start .

Steven Donnell

The Rogue Anthony Joshua

The Rogue Anthony Joshua

I’m sure every man fantasises about being a multi millionaire , I’m sure we would all love to live a life of excess , travel the world , and I’m sure we have all fantasised and dwelled on the illusion that our lives would be trouble free due to our bulging bank accounts . I’m sure that as young boys we all fantasised about being a sports star, for me personally i used to dream of being a footballer , playing in the champions league in front of 60,000 adoring fans , granted i was an average when it came to talent as a young footballer but that’s the great thing about imagination , it doesn’t need any substance and it can defy the rules of reality . Today along with millions of other average Joe’s i go watch all sorts of professional sports and support guys who had the talent and watch them inspire the next generation to dream .

Antony Joshua is all of the above , he is a boxing superstar in the UK , he is a man that has came from humble beginnings to one of highest paid boxers on the planet, a man living all our dreams . A major factor in AJ’s success is the way in which he has been promoted by Eddie Hearn , Hearn has created an image of AJ that everyone can buy into and in doing so he’s created a product that big business will fall over themselves to be associated with , it really is the blueprint on how to make a superstar , but lately is there signs that this facade has started to crack ? .

A couple of weeks ago as Eddie Hearn was in New York seeing the launch of his first Matchroom show in the US when a very a out of character tweet to Tyson Fury from AJ’s verified account said ” @Tyson_Fury get fit you fat fuck” , this tweet flew into the face of the squeaky clean image that Eddie Hearn has tried so hard to project of Joshua , but what ensued next between IFL’s Kugan Cassius and Rogue AJ was actually entertaining and refreshing , have a look .

Then a week or so after this twitter exchange there was something even more bizarre and a bit more sinister to come from Rogue AJ on twitter . Eddie Chambers took to twitter claiming Joshua had sent him a tirade of abuse on twitter , and even a slight undertone of racism , again have a look .

I am the first to admit that this really doesn’t feel like AJ but for me Matchroom and Joshua’s silence has bee deafening . Eddie Hearn went on the defensive and claim it was a fake account , then 5 days later changed his story to he thinks the account has been hacked , but between these tweets Joshua had been active on his twitter posting pictures of his holiday in Dubai . Rouge Joshua has not limited to twitter , this week he took to snapchat and gave his views on Zimbabwean President/Tyrant Robert Mugabe being forced to resign due to pressure from his own people and the international community , a man who has ruled with an iron fist , using torture and greed to force his country into near starvation aswell as promoting Anti White propaganda . Here is what Rogue AJ had to say .

: “Why do they despise Robert Mugabe?” He later posted a selfie along with the caption: “Mugabe… is your view what you’ve been told?

““Or what you have learnt through research? Or what you’ve been programmed to know via media outlets?”

Now i am not one for letting a boxer influence my views on world affairs , especially not one who asked Kugan Cassius if Sri Lanka was in India , but this kind of talk is dangerous and irresponsible and if it is not the real Anthony Joshua , then Joshua and his team should be in the public eye trying to distance themselves from these image damaging comments. There is no doubt that Rogue AJ is far more interesting than the the AJ we have been spoon fed over the years but this race driven undertone doesn’t sit right with me . I do hope this is some hack but as i have eluded to , the reaction of his team does not fill me with confidence .

Steven Donnell