AND THE NEW – Jamie Morrissey wins Celtic title and makes history

Jamie Morrissey got tangible reward for his ‘set the tone’ approach to boxing as he made history on the double in Glasgow tonight.

The Treaty County fighter claimed the BUI Celtic title with a victory in Scotland to enjoy domestic Irish success faster than any other boxer while becoming the first fighter to win domestic titles in both Muay Thai and boxing.

It’s a huge achievement for a pugilist with no amateur experience – and it’s success he predicted when he turned over with a ‘shake things up’ promise.

When the Limerick super middle first crossed codes he admitted he was confused by the tendency to try and record build within boxing. He called for his fellow 168lbs fighters to change the norm and fight each other as early as possible. That lead to a Fight of the Year with Dublin’s Robbie Burke as early as his second fight and in just fight number four, Morrissey claimed the prettiest strap in Irish boxing.

The tall 168lbs fighter buckled that title around his waist after he defeated Scot Ben McGivern in the main event of a Kynoch Boxing show at the Lagoon Leisure Centre, Paisley.

McGivern made it more competitive than some predicted but Morrissey was in control for the majority of the clash and was a deserved 78-74 winner.

The Irish fighter did hurt his fellow Celt on numerous occasions but the Kynoch hardman showed real heart and was there swinging till the final bell.

The early birthday present also comes with mandatory status for the Irish strap and with the Munster man’s willingness to compete domestically he could continue his fast career start with an Irish title fight early next year.

The victory also win means Limerick can now boast two Celtic Champions, Graham McCormack at middle and Morrissey at super middle, both of whom are trained by Shaun Kelly and managed by Ian Gaughran.

The size difference was apparent from the off with Morrissey towering over the Scot. Usiing that size advantage he looked to keep it long while the home fighter tried to find a route inside from where he could load up and land.

The Limerick man did have to deal with some Scottish flurries but landed the majority of clean punches and looked in control. Simple one-twos scored regularly while the looping uppercut to the body, that Edward Donovan, who registered a win earlier on the card, called for proved fruitful.

McGivern stood off somewhat in the second allowing Morrissey to use his reach advantage to score with relative ease. Again the one-two landed often with the uppercut hook added to the arsenal.

The Treaty County fighter really began to frustrate his opponent in the third, indeed he frustrated him to the extent he began throwing Hail Marys in a bid to turn the tide. By the end of the session, he was possibly saying his Hail Marys, as it looked like he needed divine intervention to get back into the fight. Morrissey punished McGivern’s abandonment and hurt him with some solid shots including three uppercuts of real note.

To his credit, McGivern showed the kind of spirit and fight Morrissey predicted he would in an all-action fourth. It was wild but he landed some shots clean and dragged the taller fighter into his kind of fight. Morrissey did land big shots of his own but it was a stanza that gave McGivern fans hope.

Trainer Shaun Kelly shared some stern words between rounds and the Limerick man put some distance between him and his rival in the fifth both literally and figuratively. He kept it simple, used his size, and tied up anytime McGivern got close. The approach allowed him to rattle the Scot’s head back on a number of occasions as he banked another round.

The sixth and seventh followed a similar pattern with Morrissey landing clean and McGivern showing a solid chin and good heart in between some wild flurries.

The home fighter came out swinging in the last round but the Irish puncher meet fire with fire when needed leading to an exciting finish.

The result sees Morrissey improve to 4-0 and become a champion, while McGivern drops to 3-1-1.

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com