BONUS – Padraig McCrory chuffed with high-profile Collins chance

Steve Collins is the icing on a Féile cake for Padraig McCrory [8(3)-0].

The St James’s super middleweight contender steps up to all-Irish action for the second time in his career on August 3rd, but this time for a title.

It’s a genuine chance for the Irish-Boxing.com Knockout of the Year winner to begin progression from the learning phase toward contender status while substantially increasing his profile with a win over known opposition live on BT Sport and ESPN+

Indeed, with the BUI Celtic super middleweight title on the line victory would put ‘The Hammer’ into Irish title pole.

Yet, just the venue, occasion and event all seem more than enough for ‘The Hammer’.

You get the feeling McCrory would be happy enough with the chance to shadow box in the Féile ring at the Falls Park and that such an intriguing fight is puts him in bonus territory.

“I’m more excited about the event to be honest,” he told Irish-Boxing.com following the confirmation of his fight with Dubliner Collins [13(4)-2(0)-1].

“It’s going to be massive, but now I have a decent name to fight its got that bit more exciting,” he adds before expanding.

“This is extra special. The venue is a stone throw from my house, the opponent brings a reputation through his dad and the occasion is massive. Then you have  BT Sport, ESPN, and Top Rank coming to Belfast. All that it makes it all the more special.”

McCrory looked set to fight Taylor McGoldrick on the Michael Conlan undercard and by all accounts a clash had been agreed. However, the Tyrone southpaw suffered surprise stoppage defeat last time out and it put paid the prospect of the pair meeting.

The Belfast fighter was disappointed to see the fight fall through, but believes Collins is a more exciting prospect for the fans.

“I expected Taylor to come through his last fight and we had a fight more less arranged but unfortunately he was hit with a big shot and knocked out. That fight excited me, but with Collins’ profile I feel this might be a bit bigger,” he said before explaining how the Collins fight came about.

“Straight after Taylor’s fight me and Jamie [Conlan] had a quick chat. He mentioned a few names but none overly appealed, then he came back a few hours later and give me Collins name. It was like a light bulb went off in my head and I didn’t thick twice.”

With an impressive victory over old amateur rival Sean McGlinchy and three knockout wins – one of real showreel quality – in his first six fights real excitement began to develop around the ticket seller.

However, it has come to the stage where fans are suggesting he needs to fight someone with ambition to allow him to show his true capabilities.

Two of the more adept survivalists provided opposition in 2019 and haven’t allowed the 28-year-old to steal the two #MTKFightNight shows he has appeared on. Obviously, just surviving won’t be on ‘The Wolfhound’s’ mind.

The Castleknock former cruiser will be coming to win and that is something McCrory is happy about it.

“I’m a natural boxer and most of these journeymen don’t want to know when I clip them. That means I turn into the fighter that is going forward. I think the McGlinchey fight showed I can box and fight. When people come to fight I enjoy it more.”

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Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: [email protected]