Dublin footballer helping to point Irish Olympic boxing team in the right direction

Kevin McManamon will spend a significant part of the summer pointing the Irish Olympic boxing team in the right direction rather than scoring points for Dublin.

The eight-time All Ireland winner is currently in Japan as part of the Irish boxing team’s backroom staff and is said to be a valued part of the team.

The St Jude’s clubman has been involved with the IABA and the High-Performance Team in particular since 2017 and continues the Performance Psychology Support role in Tokyo.

Speaking to the42.ie previously about his role the Dublin forward revealed his work wasn’t a daily thing but presumably that changes through an Olympic tournament.

“It would be different per athlete,” he said of his role with Team Ireland.

“I do the performance psychology with them. It’s more the planning and the reviewing that I do rather than in the executing stage where they’re actually over there delivering it.

“You meet them every few weeks, you have group sessions and you’re involved in some of the training. I’m just there as a mental skills coach essentially to give them tools to perform consistently in the upper-range of their capabilities.I love it, it’s cool and fascinating to meet people from that world and that sport. I learn a lot from them and get a lot professionally out of it.

“Sports psychology wouldn’t be full-time. I do some group facilitation work, do connections work and things on leadership development and stuff like that. It’s broad enough at the minute.”

Speaking to Gavan Casey also of the42.ie parish Irish captain Brendan Irvine revealed the footballer’s quick thinking played a part in his Olympic qualification.

Going into his qualification bout in London in 2020 the St Paul’s BC fighter was unaware the tournament had been postponed and McManamon made sure it stayed that way.

“When I was walking into the arena, we’d gotten friendly with the bus driver and he turned to Kevin, the psychologist, and said, ‘The tournament’s finished from today — it’s the last day.’ And Kevin was like, ‘Ehhh, ahhh, no, no’, trying to hide it from me. I goes to Kevin, ‘What did he say?’ And Kevin says, ‘Ah, nothing — he’s not making any sense.’ So, I didn’t think much of it. And even when I got into the warm-up and stuff, I saw everybody whispering. But it was for the best that it was hidden from me, like.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years