‘The Iron’ enjoyed a relatively busy year in 2018 winning the Irish light middleweight title live on TG4 before fighting Anthony Fowler live on Sky Sports and winning a comeback bout in Castlebar in December.
However, he admits to being somewhat frustrated during that period. The TG4 win looked likely to be a springboard to success at home, but his promoters Red Corner disappeared from the scene soon after.
With little in the way of options at home, the Inner City Dub then took a massive chance against the highly rated Fowler and, despite impressing in patches, was ultimately stopped by the Matchroom prospect.
Mayo followed but O’Brien was down the card and the slick operator began to wonder where he could go to progress.
Then in stepped Murphys Boxing and the Irish light middleweight champion has been handed the chance to emulate fellow Celtic Warrior Gym fighters Spike O’Sullivan, Niall Kennedy and Ray Moylette who have all forged a following and reputation Stateside.
O’Brien is looking to get page one of the next chapter off to an impressive start tonight.
“It was very frustrating and disheartening because I’m the type of person who trains all year round, but when you don’t have that end goal of a fight date to look forward to its very hard to keep the motivation going and keep pushing yourself,” O’Brien explained to Irish-Boxing.com.
“We have been trying to get something going out here for a while now as there is not much going on for me in Ireland at the moment, so Paschal pushed for this fight for me and Murphy’s boxing were good enough to put me on.
The details of the promotional agreement have yet to be revealed and in terms of O’Brien his sole focus seems to be on this weekend.
The Paschal Collins-trained fighter is just excited to be fighting on the Murphys show in the Boston suburb of Melrose and knows an impressive performance could open doors for him on the other side of the Atlantic.
“It’s amazing [to be fighting in America]. I couldn’t have asked for something better. It’s something new and great opportunities can come out of it.”
“It’s very exciting it’s every boxers dream to fight out in the States and now I have the opportunity to showcase my talent out here and hopefully kick on from there,” he adds before revealing at this moment in time he is happy to take it one fight at a time Stateside.
“There is nothing confirmed as of yet. I am going to just take it one fight and a time and hopefully get out here a couple more times this year.”
The Irish title holder will face local Antonio Chaves Fernandez on the card and is confident of victory.
Indeed, he told the Boston fans to expect an eye-catching performance from him as he tries to make an impression.
“I haven’t watched him,” admits O’Brien. “His records not great but he has a lot of experience and I know that the opponents over here are a lot tougher than those in Europe.”
“They can expect a great fight. I am looking to showcase my skills, put on a show and win comfortably,” he adds before dishing out the thanks yous in typical grateful fashion.
“Also I just want to say a massive thanks to everyone for the support they have shown me and everyone who has bought tickets in Boston to come support me. Big thanks to Murphys Boxing for the opportunity and to my team and sponsors for making all of this possible.”
“Everyone at home make sure to tune into Dropkick Murphys Facebook page on Friday.”