Brett McGinty will be the youngest man in action on Friday night, but the 18 year old welterweight notes that he will be the more experienced 69kg fighter in the National Senior Elite final.
The Oakleaf BC teen, a decorated underage boxer, faces Dean Walsh in a mouth-watering decider after both came through their respective quarter and semi finals.
McGinty defeated Peter Carr in the last four, going toe-to-toe with the Crumlin boxer and, after a close first round, pulling away with the win.
The Derry-Donegal fighter said afterwards that “I was very happy in the last two rounds.”
“It was a tough fight, a lot of toe-to-toe stuff, I got caught with the head a few times, there’s a wee nick over my eye. It was a solid performance and one of my better ones.”
“Peter Carr came to fight. He came to win, everyone enters this tournament to win, he’s a winner, I’m a winner. Thankfully I came out on top.”
“It was a close first round, he may have nicked it, I’m not sure, but I knew after the first round that there was no way I was going to let this man get at me, I worked too hard. The last few rounds, I have to say, I was very happy with my performance.”
“It was a solid performance, probably one of my better performances. I definitely have more to improve on, but getting the win was all that mattered to me.”
The level-headed redhead is feeling confident following his entry into the Elite ranks and, barring a small scholastic distraction, believes his preparations have been excellent.
“It gives me a lot of confidence” he said. “That’s two wins now in two weeks. I have more to improve on, but it’s great to get the win. It was tough, but I’m doing everything right. My diet’s spot on, I’m in bed early every night.
“I’m trying to do Mock exams at the minute. It’s hard enough entering the Elite Championships without doing Mock exams on top of it! But my preparation was very good and I felt good in there. I’ll take a lot of confidence out of this. I had a good win after a poor performance last week, but that’s two wins in two weeks.”
“At the end of the day I got the win and a Senior final, you can’t ask for more than that.”
Now McGinty is faced with three-time Senior champion and European bronze medalist Dean Walsh, who has stepped up to welterweight for these championships and the Tokyo Olympic cycle. While Walsh may have more experience, the Ulster teen points out that he will be the more natural welter, having fought in and around the weight for over three years.
McGinty described how “Dean Walsh is a top boxer, safe to say he’s got youth behind him as well, but at the same time he’s got international experience at Senior level. That doesn’t phase me, I can honestly say that doesn’t phase me in the slightest.”
“He’s three time Senior Champion, and deservedly so, fair play to him, but at a lower weight, 64kg. He’s stepping into our world now.”
“I’m sure he has respect for me, and I have respect for him, but next week has the makings of a good fight. Next Friday night I’m going to come to fight, Dean’s going to come to fight, sure let’s have it!”
Eric Donovan joins Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill on Episode 2 of the Irish Boxing Show: