November 4th, 2002 –
Kevin O’ Hara got his paid career off to a perfect start on Saturday night with a win over fellow debutante Mike Harrington. O’ Hara (9 st 5 lbs) won’t have learned too much from a facile first round stoppage victory over an opponent who froze like a rabbit in headlights in his first bout without the amateur vest and headguard. Harrington (9 st 6 lbs) looked desperately nervous in the pre fight instructions while O’ Hara looked like a man who couldn’t wait to get his pro career started.
As soon as the opening bell tolled Harrington bounded around the ring as he circled O’ Hara frantically. O’ Hara looked understandably puzzled by his opponents style but soon realised that there was nothing for it but to chase after his elusive foe. It took O’ Hara two minutes to catch up with Harrington but when he did it only took one right hook to send the Torquay man to the floor. Harrington got to his feet but a few more glancing blows from this summers Commonwealth representative bundled Harrison to the canvas for the second time. By then Harrington’s corner had seen enough and threw in the towel much to the relief of their fighter and O’ Hara. The youngster who had the alias “Sweet Pea” emblazoned across the band of his trunks is unlikely to have it as easy again as a pro but the win gets him off to a great start and it will be interesting to track his development in the pro ranks.
Fellow newcomer Ger McAuley didn’t have it as easy as his stable mate. The Belfast man struggled to deal with Lee “Taz” Jones in a four rounder at light middleweight. O’ Hara escaped with a draw on referee David Ervine’s card but many at ringside felt that the Welsh man might have shaded the four rounder. For what it’s worth I scored it exactly the same as the referee at 38 points apiece. Jones looked the classier operator but coming in at late notice he faded in the last two rounds with McAuley’s higher workrate allowing him back into the fight.