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Brandon McCarthy tames ‘The Lion’ in Florida

Brandon McCarthy had too much by way of skill and smarts for local tough guy  Ryan Schwartzberg in Florida on Wednesday night.

The Kilkenny man stepped up to six rounds to fight an American with upset previous and a reputation for testing prospects in just his second fight.

The 22-year-old managed the perceived early test with ease, passing it with flying colours to make it two wins from two since ditching the vest.

McCarthy had ‘The Lion’ tamed, outboxing the Florida native from start to finish to secure a 59-54, 60-53, 60-53 points win.

McCarthy’s superior ability was obvious from round one. Boxing behind a relaxed but solid jab, he wasn’t long about finding a home for the right hand, and it became instantly clear that the American would need more than his trademark guts to be competitive.

The former amateur standout was picking clean shots and went the entire three minutes without having his chin checked.

The Kilkenny native was equally relaxed and accurate in the second. He began to vary and double up the jab, which opened the pathway to some nice combinations.

By the end of the round, he had Schwartzberg on the canvas, walking him onto a stiff jab to score a knockdown. The away corner battler wasn’t badly hurt and got to steady legs while shaking his head, although the 16-time Irish champion had his legs wobbling and head rocking this time involuntarily after a crisp right hand on the bell.

Schwartzberg’s toughness was on display as he ate big one-twos throughout the third. McCarthy slightly moved through the gears but didn’t look like stopping his durable foe. The Irish man also finished the stanza decorated in blood after his nose began to bleed.

Spurred on by the sight of claret, Schwartzberg had a little go in the fourth, he didn’t do enough to take the round but did introduce the Irish prospect to some rough-house tactics for the first time in his career.

McCarthy’s jab was back to its best in the fifth and that allowed the 23-year-old to let solid and accurate right hands loose to great success.

Indeed, by the end of the session, it was clear Schwartzberg was feeling the effects, although the Lion finished the round standing and was still in the fight in the sixth.

LA trained Kilkenny man flirted with moving through the gears in the final three minute session and seemed to enjoy putting it on his second pro foe. However, again to his credit, the noted local tough guy took some solid shots including a brilliantly crafted uppercut and slip right hand to ensure the result would be determined by the cards


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years