Cruise-Keeler Ordered – Cool Hand Luke answers the call

The Boxing Union of Ireland yesterday ordered an Irish middleweight title fight between Darren Cruise and Luke Keeler.

Both fighters have expressed their willingness to compete in the match-up which may possibly appear on the mooted September FS Promotions show.

Last weekend Roscommon’s Cruise scored an impressive knocokout at the National Stadium, and immediately called out both Luke Keeler and Conrad Cummings to face him in an Irish title fight.

Keeler, who fights next month in America on a Murphy’s Boxing card, told that he would “be delighted to fight him [Cruise] on the next Dublin show for the Irish Title.”

Cruise’s promoter Mark Dunlop had offered Keeler the fight for last week’s show, but the Dubliner was forced to reluctantly turn down the offer due to already having a Matchroom-funded fight in America signed.

Cruise [7(1)-5(0)] challenged for the Irish super middleweight title in April and, despite his size disadvantage, lost a narrow (95:96) decision to reigning champ JJ McDonagh.

Keeler [9(5)-2(1)] is currently in the process of rebuilding following a stoppage loss to Tom Doran in a Fight of the Year contender.

There is something of a natural time-limit to this bout and one which throws doubt over whether the fight can actually happen, with Army man Cruise due to go on active duty in Syria in September.

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: