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Chin and bear it – Kevin Cronin hoping his opponent takes his power

Kevin Cronin [2(1)-0] hopes Boris Mrkonjic‘s chin holds up when they share a ring in Luxembourg this weekend.

The Kerry fighter, who has previously been a big fan of knockouts, is adamant he wants to be taken the distance by Mrkonkjic [1(1)-3(2)] this weekend.

It’s an unusual desire for a fighter itching to get back in the ring but Cronin believes going the six for the first time would be massively beneficial, particularly off the back of a layoff.

No doubt the ‘Kingdom Warrior’s’ loyal following will be baying for blood and will want to see a stoppage but that doesn’t worry the young prospect.

Miltown light heavyweight, Cronin believes his improved skillset will be noticeable and entertaining over six.

“This is a step up in rounds for me, I step up to six rounds and to be honest I hope it goes the distance,” the Boxing Ireland fighter told Irish-boxing.com.

“If it goes six I can show more of my boxing than usual and show how good my engine,” he adds before suggesting a possible threat to his plan.

“The problem is when I get behind my boxing and stop loading up on shots I seem to be doing more damage and hurting people, so if I get going in there I will stop anyone.

“Still I hope my opponent brings the pressure on Saturday. Again that is when I will be able to showcase my skills. I am at my best when someone is trying to beat me.”

“I will be there to steal the show as always, but hopefully I can do that over six and get a points win, to be honest.”

The Boxing Ireland Promotions fighter steps into the unknown this weekend not just in terms of venturing to Luxembourg but in terms of opponent too.

“I really don’t know what to expect,”he adds.

“When I looked into him I seen he has a Muay Thai background and has transitioned to boxing, so it will be a new style to box.”

The fight represents Cronin’s first since summer of 2019 and only his third in all.

With those stats in mind this weekend would most likely be viewed as a ring rust freeing affair, although Cronin seems confident an improved fighter will be on display in the tiny BeNeLux country.

The Jonathan Lewins-trained man believes he has improved over the lockdown and has made the most of the chance to train full time.

“Lockdown has been frustrating with no fights but it also gave me a chance to step back and look at bits I should be working on and things I should be doing different, nutrition, boxing, training etc.

“I think it gave me a chance to find a style of boxing that suits me best.”

There has also been a change in body shape as well as style for the Munster man who could find himself stepping down in class.

“I had no distractions with lockdown and it made things a bit easier on the nutrition side of things also,” he explained

“I’ve been close to weight with the last few weeks and super middle may be an option at the minute. We will at least get one fight to see how I perform at that weight first before making up our mind, but first I’ve to do the business the weekend.”

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 sports for a living for over 20 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