By Jonny Stapleton
The arrival of Paddy Doherty caused commotion in the Kings Hall last Saturday night but it was the big boxing brothers and not the Big Brother winner that Tyson Fury was focused on after registering victory on his Belfast debut.
Fury recovered from a third round scare to eventually stopNicolai Firtha in the fifth round of an exciting fight and now wants another Irish based clash to take him a step closer to a showdown with one of the Klitschko brothers.
Andy Lee’s cousin asked promoter Mick Hennessy to make Ireland’s current boxing capital his permanent boxing home. The giant heavyweight, who provides entertainment both in and out of the ring, hopes to be back in the iconic Ulster venue on November 12 and plans to secure the kind of opponent that will help set up a clash with one of the brothers, who share between them the WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO world titles.
“I am going to try and base myself out of Belfast. Hopefully I will be back. I plan to go on and do big things and win the world title. I am going to ask Mick if I can come back in November because the reception I got was out of this world. Hopefully it will be another good opponent,” Fury explained.
“I want someone that will take me closer to the Klitschkos but its hard to find a good heavyweight out there. That is why I am talked about so much and linked to the brothers. I come to fight the others come to survive. I don’t think there are many out there than can touch me. If I can keep stepping up the opponents i can get into contention.”
The first heavyweight to be a King’s Hall’s main event certainly got the people of Belfast talking last night as he provided an entertaining bout.
Not least because he got rocked in the third round by a right that would have brought a wry smile to the face of Martin Rogan. There was a TV black and the second round and Fury almost switched off in the third.
In truth bar that one minute of discomfort the Manchester man was in control and won comfortably.
Indeed he dismissed his third round trouble as a heavyweight occupational hazard.
“It was a tough fight. It was action packed which is good for the Irish fight fans. I came here to do a job. I got the job done. To be honest this is heavyweight boxing you are going to get hit. I got caught in the third round, but I showed my fitness and I came back and done the job. I wasn’t too hurt I was more caught off balance but I was ok. He took some shots too. I am glad the ref stopped it for safety sake.”
Meanwhile debutant Dee Walsh impressed on the undercard. Fellow Belfast fighter Gerard Healey couldn’t find ‘Waldo’ with his shots and the 21 year old looked comfortable throughout en route to a 39-37 win.
Another evasive specialist Paul Griffin suffered a first round stoppage defeat that could ultimately close the curtain on the Irish amateur legend’s career.
Joe Hillerby shaded a tight fight with the teak tough Tommy Tolan whilst Donegal’s Michael McLaughlin also had his hand raised. Junior Witter and Levan Ghvamichava both won after the main event.