‘Forgotten Man’ Tyrone McKenna [23(10)-3(1)-1] is ready to put his name back on everyone’s lips with a win he believes will allow him to give some of the biggest names in the sport some lip.
‘The Mighty Celt’ is the latest Irish fighter to have secured a shot at the IBO world title and will fight Nicholas Esposito for the strap on a Conlan Boxing card in the RDS on September 16.
The clash will end a period of frustrating inactivity for the popular 33-year-old – McKenna hasn’t fought since he beat Chris Jenkins in a bloodbath last August – and he argues it’s a fight that will allow him to take a shortcut back toward the big names.
Indeed, the call-out king says he will be back on his throne if he secures the title in Dublin later this year.
“It’s been frustrating but these things happen and I just have to forget about it and kick on,” he tells the Irish News.
“This fight in September will be worth the wait. I’ve been asking for a big fight and this is a much bigger fight than Liam Taylor would have been, it’ll give me a platform to be able to call out the big names in the division.
“It’s exactly the fight I needed at this stage of my career, it’s the fight that I wanted and I’m excited for it.”
Reflecting on the year out, the Whiskey and White podcaster, said it had its roots in bad luck rather than injury.
McKenna also claims he felt denied a chance to cash in on the momentum he gained by beating Jenkins in entertaining fashion.
“I had a crowd-pleased fight with Jenkins who is a great fighter and I beat him in a war and I thought: ‘Momentum is going to start building here’. Everyone loves watching a war, they love watching me have a bloodbath. I was thinking everything was going to kick off and I’d have another big fight and get up to the level of Prograis again.
“Unfortunately the Liam Taylor fight fell through and a couple of other fights fell through and I was thinking: ‘Here, I’m the forgotten man’. It was frustrating because I feel like I haven’t past my best, I feel like I’m still at my peak. I’m still fighting well, I’m training hard…”