“Crazy” Declan Kenna promising Irish boxing takeover


There’s been few introductions to Irish boxing quite as explosive as Declan Kenna earlier this month.

The Tallaght super featherweight has not yet made his professional debut but certainly made an impression at the press conference to launch the TG4 ‘Clash of the Titans’ card.

Coming from an MMA background, Kenna has entered boxing to chase a rematch with Larne teenager Kelvin McDonald.

Now living in Drogheda, Kenna was defeated by McDonald [now 1-0] in a semi-pro bout on the Ulster scene last year and has wanted to set the record straight ever since, following ‘Boom Boom’ into the pros and signing with Boxing Ireland Promotions.

A prolific online presence and a smack talker extraordinaire, Kenna has managed to secure the rematch in what will be his pro debut on the biggest show to take place in Dublin in years.

A fighter rather than a boxer, ‘Dollar Dec’ was not happy with how their unlicenced clash played out and believes it will be completely different over four three-minute rounds on home turf on the big card on March 30th.

Recalling their first meeting, Kenna explained to Irish-Boxing.com how “it was three two-minute rounds. It was in a Prizefighter tournament, we had both fought our quarter finals and won to get into the semis. We ended up fighting and I was standing there banging while he was running away.”

“He beat me on points, narrowly, but he definitely won’t beat me now, I’m a different animal. I thought I won the fight but he beat me on points, he didn’t knock me out, he didn’t stop me. Nothing will stop me, he definitely won’t stop me.”

“If he couldn’t stop me up there he won’t do anything down here. This is my debut, my home town, nobody will stop me.”

A ticket seller, Kenna’s press conference antics, where he verbally tore into McDonald, has generated considerable attention – as has his online campaign since.

“I’ve a big following, I’m famous,” he jokes.

“I run Cage Legacy, Ireland’s leading MMA promotion.

“He needs to fight me, I don’t need to fight him. I could have fought a little sandbag, a little ham and egger that gets brought in, I’m not doing that, I’m fighting him in my first fight. I want the biggest fights, real fighters fight.”

With a background in MMA and a personal grudge towards McDonald, one would be forgiven for thinking that Kenna’s appearance next month will be a case of ‘one and done’, a mere chance to right a wrong.

However, the 30-year-old is promising bigger things.

Kenna outlined how “it’s the start of something special. This is a move, I’m going to bring Irish boxing back to where it needs to be.”

“I’m going to be the face of Irish boxing, I’m going to bring it to new levels.”

“I’m looking forward to it, no pressure.”

“I am mad, you need to be mad to be doing this.”

Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie