Frankly Speaking

01 July 2008 – by Oisin Fagan

To be quite honest, preparation for my fight at the National Stadium on July 12 hasn’t been going as planned. My head is all over the place since moving home and I am still jet-lagged to bits.

Both trainers, Eddie Autry and Steve Thomasson, whom I trained under, are still back in the US and they have other jobs to help pay their bills, as they are only part-timers like myself.

So, unlike some of the lads who are looked after by the ‘bigger’ promoters, I don’t have enough money to offer my trainers trips overseas to prepare me for fights, for weeks-on-end, so I just have to make do.

To make matters worse, since I don’t have a car at home, I have to rely on my parents and friends of mine to give me lifts to the various gyms, but while they’re very good, I don’t like asking them all the time. For the next couple of weeks, I’ll be travelling around a lot of gyms to find a suitable trainer and hopefully things will start coming to fruition in time for fight night.

One good thing is that no matter what’s going on in my life, my fitness, dedication and toughness never waver because I hold those assets to be my best traits in the ring.

So, whatever the weather or however I’m feeling, I train hard, regardless – even if it’s to go to a local fitness gym or go out for a long run.

Lately, Irish amateur champ Conor Ahearn and my pal Paul O’Byrne, as well as my parents, have been great at giving me lifts to the gyms. They don’t seem to mind being inconvenienced to help me out. And Conor and I work well together when we get in for sparring sessions.

The people at my local gyms, Portmarnock Sports and Leisure Club and the Straight Blast Gym, in Baldoyle, have been brilliant to me and have offered to let me use their facilities, so that’s helped me out, while I’m still in the hunt for a trainer.

The plan is that I am home for good; however, things are always changing, so I can’t say for sure. My US Visa was out this month; hence my return home, but my girlfriend, Alissa, lives in Indiana and, in the end, I’ll either move back to the US, or she’ll move to Ireland. So, things are somewhat ‘up in the air’, regarding that matter right now.

Inside the ring, I’d love a fight with Michael Gomez. I’d say that would be a mental little fight. It looks like Verquan Kimbrough has ducked me one time too often. We asked him no less than 4 times for a rematch and every time tget said they’d send out the contract, they failed to – every single time.

It was a shame because they were due to show it as a main event for the NABA title on ESPN 2 and it would have gotten us both some really good publicity. He beat me on a split-decision in his hometown in December, but it was obvious to everyone present that he lost.

When they promised the rematch, I turned down two big paydays to fight him, but now he seems to have bottled it – yet again. It got so bad that the last time we negotiated with his people, we said we wanted some ‘security-money’ so they couldn’t pull out again, but no money came and no contract came either.

So, now I’m game for anything that will propel me up the ladder. And, although Michael Gomez lost to Amir Khan, he showed some great heart and I got thinking that a fight with him, could be like a Gatti-Ward type fight, so, the answer is YES, absolutely, I’d love to fight him. And hopefully one of the big promoters out there, could make it worth our while. We’re both coming to the end of our careers in the next couple years, so I wouldn’t say no to a nice payday. And I promise it would be an absolute war!

So, now I’m game for anything that will propel me up the ladder. And, although Micheal Gomez lost to Amir Khan, he showed some great heart and I got thinking that a fight with him could be like a Gatti-Ward type fight, so, the answer is YES, absolutely, I’d love to fight him.

Hopefully one of the big promoters out there could make it worth our while, too! We’re both coming to the end of our careers in the next couple years, so I wouldn’t say no to a nice payday. And I promise it would be an absolute war!

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