Eric Donovan [13(7)-1(1)] is ready to work his way back into EU title pole with victory in Belfast early this Saturday.
The Irish featherweight title winner was made mandatory for the EBU European title gateway strap and was set to fight for the smaller blue belt on May 15.
However, the 36-year-old was forced to pull out of the fight with Mario Alfano [15(4)-2(0)-1] due to a rib injury and hasn’t fought since.
The MHD fighter is no longer registered as mandatory for the title EU title by the European Boxing Union, but it’s believed he is still very close to a shot at the vacant belt.
The Athy BC graduate admits he was gutted when he had to pull out of the massive gateway clash and his focus is now on winning this weekend so he can return to the title frame.
“I was absolutely gutted about it, naturally enough, as it was a very important fight and one I dreamed of for so long,” Donovan said when speaking to Irish-boxing.com.
“Now, I must stay focused and live in the present and work my way back into that position.”
He won’t challenge for a continental strap but Donovan does return on the Bomb Proof card that also includes debuts for Jesus Alvarez and Colm Murphy, a comeback for Dominic Donegan and a fight for Scottish Boxxer heavyweight Nick Campbell.
The Kildare fighter is delighted to be back and reveals he goes into the clash injury-free.
“I’m just delighted to be back in the ring first and foremost,” he said.
“I haven’t been in the ring since last December, with my last two scheduled fights not happening through a logistics issue and then my rib injury.”
“My injury is good now, fully healed and I’m sparring well.”
‘Lilywhite Lightning’ takes on Laszlo Szoke [2(2)-5(1)] on what is the first Irish indoor bill with fans allowed to attend since February of 2020 when Boxing Ireland and MTK held events in different venues on the same night.
Donovan, who topped a Celtic Clash card that night, is delighted to be back fighting in front of crowds again.
“It’s a sell-out which is great, It could have been sold out two or three times over, but I’m just very happy to be fighting again, I love this sport. It’s going to be a great night I think.”