Coach Conrad Cummings ‘buzzing to make champions’

It’s not fighting but it appears to be the next best thing for Conrad Cummings.

A year after he hung up the gloves, ‘Mr Dynamite’ has officially taken up the pads and is currently transitioning into a coach.

The move comes after the ever-entertaining Tyrone favourite listened to medical advice and retired as young as 30. He admits stepping away from a sport he dedicated his entire life to was hard to deal with, but now, having come to terms with not being a boxer anymore, the CoalIsland man has found a way to get his fight fix.

It’s not quite the thrill of trading serious leather but Cummings is delighted to be back in the game as a coach.

“It was hard to accept at the time,” the former WBO European title holder told Irish-boxing.com when reflecting on retirement.

“I had got myself back into fantastic shape, physically, mentally and emotionally, also I was only just turned 30, but I’m happy now. I’m happy to be out fit and healthy and I’m enjoying life outside the ropes. I lived my dream and it had to end someday I guess.

“It was extremely tough coming to terms with especially as I felt I had more to give and only being young,” he continues before reverting to a more bright side approach.

“I’m glad to be out healthy and I’ll be able to tell my children, my partner is pregnant again, about their Daddy boxing all over the world and show my achievements, I do miss it a lot. I still train very hard daily, eat well and I’m off the booze 4 months now. I did 6 rounds of body sparring last week and 4 on the bag after, so I still live like a fighter! That helps me I guess.”

Remaining in the fight environment in Carrickfergus has enabled the former WSB fighter to help out his old coach and eventually led to him pursuing his license.

“Iain Mahood coached me for my last fight, the one that didn’t happen, it was the best camp I had in years. We kept in contact and I get down to Carrickfergus much as I can, so I started helping the lads in the gym,” he explains how the coaching idea began.

“I will have my full pro license as a coach soon and here we are, great times ahead. No doubt!”

Cummings will work with Manhood, who coaches the likes of Dublin prospect Willo Hayden, recent BUI Celtic title challenger Ruadhan Farrell as well as IBO super featherweight champion Anthony Cacace.

“I will be helping all the fighters down at Carrickfergus Evolution gym including Anto Cacace, Willo Hayden and Ruadhan Farrell. I’m not the main coach for any one fighter as of yet. I’ll link up with the right lads when I feel the time is right,” he adds before suggesting he will take a work-smart approach to training.

“As a coach, I feel I can bring a lot. I know the highs and lows of the game, also personally I probably burnt myself out a bit, so I feel I know when to put the foot down on the accelerator and when to ease it off for a fighter, sometimes less is more, smart work!”

Cummings worked under some quality coaches in his time including Shane McGuigan, Jamie Moore, Manhood, the coaches at Holy Trinity, and of course his Father, who he will look to emulate in creating champions.

“My Father was an amazing coach,” he adds. “I learnt so much from him, he was always so supportive and kept me fresh, never overtrained me. He coached me a lot by explaining things in the ring, not just hitting the pads for a workout. I will try and replicate that as this is fantastic for development as a fighter.”

Now having given up his world title dream Cummings will work to help fighters achieve their dreams in the ring.

“I’m buzzing to start and to make champions!”

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 sport for a living for 19 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