Confident Craig O’Brien ready to change career in Milan

It will be a case of third time’s a charm on October 1st when Craig O’Brien [12(1)-2(1)] takes to the ring in Italy.

The Dublin light middleweight will feature on his third Matchroom bill at the Allianz Cloud Arena in Milan and is convinced he will be coming home with a win.

O’Brien performed admirably against top Brits Anthony Fowler and Kieron Conway in 2018 and 2019 respectively but found himself on the losing side – the only defeats of his career thus far. He believes things will be very different next time out, however.

The Irish light middleweight champion will take on Italy-based Nigerian Samuel Nmomah [15(4)-0] in an eight-rounder on the DAZN-streamed bill and knows that he finds himself in an immensely winnable bout.

O’Brien had previously taken a fight on the card with a stronger, unnamed opponent, but a pull-out means he now faces the rather untested Nmomah who has not set himself apart as a top prospect to date.

Turning 32 the week after the fight, O’Brien knows it’s time to step up the gears and explained to how “the thinking was it’s live on the DAZN plus is an eight round fight and a very good opportunity for me on a big platform.”

“I was offered a fight about two weeks ago on the DAZN through Paschal [Collins, coach and manager], I said yes but the guy had to pull out so they came back with this opponent.”

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While it’s not exactly the same – with Fabio Turchi v Tommy McCarthy being a headliner – O’Brien knows the power of a win on such a stage.

‘The Iron’ outlined how “a win here is massive, I’ve already been told if I win they will have another big fight for me.”

“I’ll be hoping after I win that I’ll get big fights just like Tommy McCarthy did 0 he went out there and done the business and got rewarded with big fights as did a couple of UK fighters over the last year or so, so I’d be hope in for the same.”

O’Brien will admit that he didn’t look overly impressive in squeezing out a split decision win over Polish journeyman Daniel Przewieslik in Belgium back in March – but he also knows that the mid-pandemic outing will stand to him.

Indeed, the inner-city Dub appears more confident than he’s ever been.

O’Brien described how “my last fight broke the cobwebs of for me – plus it was no walkover, it was a hard and tough fight so that will stand to me going in to this fight.”

“I’m fully confident I win this fights. All my other fights and experiences lead me to this fight.”

“I don’t know a lot [about Nmomah]. I have looked at his record and it’s very good but he hasn’t boxed any good names to note. I expect him to come fit and ready, as will I and it will be a great fight – one that I’m fully confident of winning.

“I am flat out training super hard and over the next five, six weeks I’m leaving no stone unturned. I’ll do everything right to get my hand raised on the night.”


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Jonny Stapleton 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: