Eric Donovan closing in on European Union title fight


Eric Donovan [10(6)-0] is ready for a step-up and his team plan for a title fight by the end of the year.

The Athy featherweight, the reigning Irish champion, had a successful first excursion last weekend, defeating Moises Mojica at the York Hall in London and there are more away days in his future.

It has emerged this week that Donovan had been in the frame to face Spain-based Ecudorian Carlos Ramos for the vacant EBU European Union title on the same night as his London excursion. The Irishman accepted the fight in Santander but Ramos would instead choose Razaq Najib from the shortlist of opponents and promptly dominated the Englishman over twelve rounds to claim the belt.

The win saw Ramos add the EU belt to the Spanish title he won last year – via knockout of former Mick Conlan opponent Ibon Larrinaga – and Donovan remains an option for a first defence.

First though, most likely, is an outing in Ireland in the Autumn before a big – although one phone call could change all that.

Having gotten his charge to 10-0 and a national champion, Donovan’s manager, Leonard Gunning, wants to move on.

The London-based Sligo fight boss explained to Irish-Boxing.com how “it’s time to get a step-up now, one of the big Spaniards or one of the big Brits, we’ve got to get that EU title shot within the year and it is coming, it’s all coming together now.”

“September, we’ll have him back in a big fight back in front of his home audience again and that will be the last step before we get our title shot.”

Upon turning pro back in 2016 – when he ended a three-year break from the ring – Donovan identified the European title as his goal.

That belt is currently held by Andoni Gago, and an Irish title along with an away win in Spain over the EU champion would leave him primed to achieve this dream.

Donovan outlined how “I’m excited about the future. It’s a great trajectory and that’s what I want.”

“I believe I am an elite level fighter and I want to be tested. We’re in a perfect position now to pounce.”

“I put a lot of effort into every training camp and I can probably only do that three or four times a year, those ten-twelve week training camps and I need to make sure that, at the end of it, you’re not wasting time and that you’re progressing.”

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: [email protected]