The EU title is by no means the crowning moment or the end goal for Padraig McCrory [14(8)-0].
The super middleweight looks set to challenge champion Gustave Tamba for the prestigious continental crown in either Galway or Belfast later this year.
It’s a massive fight for the Belfast 34-year-old. Indeed, as ‘The Hammer’ started so late and didn’t come to the pros as an internationally decorated amateur, victory and claiming the EU strap would make his career a huge success regardless of what was to happen after.
However, the Dee Walsh-trained fighter isn’t thinking along those lines. The Conlan Boxing man views the EU belt, which generally provides access to the EBU European title most recently won by Tommy McCarthy at cruiserweight, as a stepping stone to bigger things.
“Getting the opportunity to box for an EU title alone means a lot to me but the way I’m feeling and the confidence I have at the moment I’m seeing it as a stepping stone to bigger and better title shots,” he tells Irish-boxing.com.
McCrory’s confidence has been enhanced by four consecutive step-up knockout wins the best of which came at the SSE Arena two weeks ago.
The well-supported fighter stopped Marco Antonio Periban on Michael Conlan’s ‘Return of the Mick’ undercard to enhance his standing, reputation, and self-belief.
McCrory notes he did a better job on a hungry and motivated Periban than Sadio Bika, Badou Jack, Joshua Buatsi and J’Leon Love and was complimented by the Mexican after.
“I think the win is brilliant for me. Periban is a name known not only in the UK but also in the US so, for my profile, it helps a lot. Outside of [James] DeGale, I’ve done the best job on him and he’s boxed the best in the division. After the fight, he told me I’m very strong, have power, and to stay at 168 as I will do well.”