Shercock light middleweight Owen Duffy is making the move to the pro ranks and the strong southpaw will fight without the vest for the first time on the big ‘Celtic Clash 5’ card at Good Counsel GAA club in Drimnagh.
Dublin-based Duffy will be looking to make an impact on the undercard and brings an exciting brawling style with him to the pros. This style caught the eye of veteran boxing trainer and manager Tony Davitt who signed him up from Crumlin Boxing Club at the end of last year.
While boxing is in his blood, 24-year-old Duffy has a different background in the sport to most and described to Irish-Boxing.com how “I started late, there was no boxing in my area back in Cavan. Then I heard there was a charity White Collar and my mother was telling me I should do it, so I ended fighting.”
“My mam’s older brother, he died when he was younger and he was meant to be a brilliant boxer, so I only found that out then. My mam would have been close to her brother so I said ‘you know what, I’ll do it for you’. Then there was boxing on my dad’s side too so I ended up doing it.”
“You do that six weeks in training and I was getting the better of lads in the spars. I ended up drawing with a lad that was boxing a couple of years on the day and everyone was complimenting me and how well I did for a man that never fought before. I kept it on and I ended up winning an Ulster title in my first year and then I won the All-Ireland Novice Championships,” added Duffy who also won a Ringside World Championships while under Frick McMahon at Carrickmacross BC.
Ever since he started, the physically Ulster boxer has been tipped for the pro ranks, and he notes how “A lot of people said I’d be suited to the pro, they said I box like a pro, I didn’t really know, but Tony approached me and just gave me a bit of a talk. I sat down with my dad after and he said ‘look, it’s a dream you have had since you took it up, why not go for it?’ I think 24 is the perfect time to go pro. I trust Tony and I am delighted with things so far and I am looking forward to it now.”
A Personal Trainer with Flyefit in Portobello, Duffy is sure to be in supreme shape when he takes to the ring for his four-round contest on March 24th. Along with his different background, the Shercock slugger has a modern take on training and explained how “it’s good to have that strength and conditioning side of things. I find a lot of fighters don’t understand that in getting ready for fights. You need to be able to build you can’t just develop or depend on natural strength, you have work on it.”
“You have to train two or three times a day or you’re wasting your time, you can’t hide in the pro game. The more you develop in the pro game the better condition you see the fighters are in. There are different phases in the strength training that I find I have the touch on. I can do a bit of boxing off the back foot, but I do tend to put the pressure on and would call myself more of a pressure fighter.”
Having made his decision relatively recently, it is a quick start to pro life for Duffy who notes how “it’s a lot sooner than I expected! I was out of training for two and a half months when I was talking to Tony and next thing he tells me to get ready for March 24th. It was 10 weeks out, max, and I knew I had to get fit quick. I was a good bit overweight and I burned off the Christmas and got straight back into it! I will just focus on winning the first fight that’s the main thing.”
Celtic Clash 5 is headlined by a rematch between Colin O’Donovan and Stephen McAfee for the BUI Celtic super featherweight title. Featuring on the undercard alongside Duffy will be Ballybrack lightweight Niall O’Connor, Lucan welterweight John Joyce, Jobstown super bantamweight Carl McDonald, Blanchardstown cruiserweight debutant Chris Scuvie, Crumlin lightweight Martin Quinn, and Smithfield welterweight Keane McMahon.
Tickets for the fight night are priced at €55 (ringside), €35 (unreserved) and are available from the boxers involved. Owen Duffy can be contacted at 086 228 3832.