Chris Blaney battles to bruising win and sets up title fight

Flame-haired fighter Chris Blaney certainly had to come through the fire tonight in Walsall.

The Navan super middleweight was in action on a Black County Boxing card at Banks’s Stadium and claimed an extremely hard-fought win over Anthony Fox over six rounds, the toughest fight of his career thus far.

The Ginger Ninja definitely didn’t have it all his own way, but pulled out all the stops to claim a close win on the cards and ensure that he will box for the BUI Celtic title in his next fight.

Fox had held Cork super middle Vladimir Belujsky to a debut draw back in March, and caused another Irishman trouble here, but Blaney’s class and grit won out in the end.

Blaney boxed on the outside initially, pot-shotting well. Fox began to up the pressure in the second but his momentum was slowed by a lovely left hook to the body from the Irishman.

Fox had a strong third round, pinning himself to Blaney’s chest and pushing the prospect to the ropes. The Ricky Hatton-trained fight was having slight trouble with his game opponent but came back well in the closing minutes, again courtesy of some nice bodyshots.

Blaney enjoyed a stronger start to the fourth, faring better in the exchanges as the relentless pace set by Fox continued – and the game opponent had a very strong final thirty, corner Blaney and unloading.

The physically imposing Fox resumed his pressure in the fifth, but Blaney was finally beginning to make use of his footwork and technically sounder shots.

Going into a potentially crucial sixth and final round – and looking at the scoreline it certainly seemed that way – Blaney came out with some of his best work of the fight, digging deep and upping his work-rate considerably.

Going to the referee’s scorecard a score of 58-56 was read out and it was Blaney’s hand that was raised, taking a hard-fought win.

The tough victory sees Blaney improve his record to 8(3)-0 and he will now set his sights on his BUI Celtic title fight with Matiouze Royer on October 7th at the National Stadium in Dublin. The wonderfully game Fox drops to 1(0)-9(1)-4, and he is certainly a fighter we would like to see put in with other Irish prospects in future.

gym trition

frayne carpentry

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: