Headline NewsNews

Perfect match – Andy Lee believes matching Paddy Donovan will prove difficult

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is liffey-crane-hire-1.jpg

Former middleweight world champion Andy Lee sees choosing opponents for the hugely talented Paddy Donovan as one of his biggest challenges.

The Limerick man, who manages and trains Limerick starlet Donovan [3(2)-0] and is also on Tyson Fury’s new coaching team, is delighted by the progress his young charge has made on a trio of #MTKFightNight events.

With the 21-year-old Donovan expected to move quickly as a professional under US promoters and renowned matchmakers Top Rank, Lee believes there is still much more to see.

“Match-making is an art in itself and I believe that’ll be one of the toughest elements of managing Paddy,” Lee explained.

“He’s so talented and so young and at this stage, for the first year it’s really about getting experience about different types of opponents.”

Lee, who also coaches Jason Quigley and is part of Tyson Fury’s backroom team, has no desire to spend hours going through boxrec for opponents with possibly misleading records that may reflect favorably on the ‘Real Deal’.

Lee wants the natural talent to be exposed to all forms of styles and genuinely tested as he progresses up the ladder.

“For me, the records of the opponents don’t really matter compared to their style and the way in which they fight.

“There wasn’t much to see in his debut because it was over so soon but he was a lot more comfortable with the build-up to his second fight.”

The now former amateur standout has caught the eye in just three pro outings, but his coach predicts there is more coming worthy of excitement.

“There is more finesse to come. Paddy has already shown his power and to some extent his skill but sometimes you have to create the opportunity to knock your opponent out instead of forcing it.”

Donovan is penciled in to fight on Michael Conlan’s St Patrick’s Day New York return, but rumour also has him out on the Wilder vs Fury II undercard.



Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years