30 November 2009 – By Cormac Campbell
The resurgence of the Irish title in recent times is in no small part down to ambition of Eddie Hyland.
The unbeaten Pride of Tallaght has emerged victorious having taken on the likes of Kevin OHara and Oisin Fagan in title bouts and believes that it is something all boxers should aspire to.
“You want to be the best in Ireland just like the British fighters want to win their title,” he told irish-boxing.com.
“You want to be king of your roost.”
Entertaining victories over OHara and Fagan have also earned Hyland the admiration and support of a growing fanbase.
“The support is great and people are starting to follow us wherever we are fighting,” he beamed.
“There are a load coming down to Cork to watch me on Friday and then also going to the Stadium to watch Paulie in action in the Stadium on Saturday.”
Testament to this growing popularity is the number of non-boxing engagements that Hyland is asked to attend.
“I was just at a charity photoshoot the profile has risen a little which is great and its nice to be able to help good causes. But the boxing always has to come first.
“The dream is a European title shot or to defend one of the other titles. Ive served my apprenticeship and now its time to step up.”
Hyland ends the year with a December 4 slot on the undercard of Spike OSullivan vs Ciaran Healys Irish middleweight title fight at Neptune Stadium. Facing him is Polands Maurycy Gojko, a boxer who despite sporting the unflattering record of 13-16-1 (5KO), is someone Hyland believes can complete his education.
“Ive seen him in action and he is more of a boxer than Kevin OHara or Oisin Fagan. Against those guys I had to show that I could fight but now I have to show I can box. So the different styles are a good experience and will prepare me for the big challenges next year.”
Hyland acknowledges that his timing has been somewhat fortuitous. There has been more professional boxing bills in Ireland in the last two years that were seen in the rest of the decade a theme he expects to continue in the longer trend.
“The scene was dead at the start; we had to go to England but now it has blossomed,” he beamed.
“There are so many shows and so many people getting involved. Please God everybody can sit down and work together because if they can I think the future can be very bright.”