IT has been blamed for a lot of the ills in youth culture, but Irish boxing fans won’t be bemoaning Facebook upon hearing it is the inspiration behind the return of bright prospect Dee Walsh.
‘Waldo’ couldn’t be found in terms of boxing since he pushed his record to 5-0 with victory over Robert Studzinski back in September of 2012.
After securing a debut win over Gerard Healy, beating Tommy Tolan in style before impressing Sergio Martinez on Marvilla Box show in Spain there was a good deal of hype generating around the now 24 year old.
Just as the then Gary Hyde managed puncher looked to be progressing at a nice rate the Belfast lightweight elected to hang up his gloves.
Walsh, who makes no bones about his love of ‘Money’ Mayweather, became somewhat disillusioned with the sport and with a child on the way felt he had to prioritise to support a young family.
“I retired because I was fed up with having to sell tickets,” he told Irish-boxing.com.
“The money not equating tot he long hours and hard training I was putting in. I thought I was worth more than what I was getting paid, especially with the training I was putting in. Then with a baby on the way I had to really think about my career and I decided to retire to be the best father to my son.”
Walsh admits he was content with his decision and was happy to be an ex pro.
However, he returns to the ring on the Road to Glory card against unbeaten novice Krisztian Duka on Saturday night. The inspiration behind his return? Social Media and Facebook in particular.
“I really had no intentions of coming back, but I got my Facebook back in January which I had deleted for a year and a half, and was speaking to a lot of people I hadn’t spoke to since I left boxing.
“It made me miss it a bit, then mark Dunlop got in contact with me, we had a meeting and I thought it was a good idea to come back. I had a talk with my family and they fully backed. They help me out with minding the baby when I’m training, so I couldn’t do it without them, especially my mother. Then I got in contact with Gerard McManus and now he’s my new trainer so everything fell into place.”
Walsh hasn’t found the absence a hindrance as he has returned to gym and is feeling fit confident and ready to put on a performance in the Devinish.
“It wasn’t as hard as I thought,” he added when asked about returning to training.
“I have trained a lot harder. I have a strength and conditioning coach Dan Anderson and I’m training up to three times a day. Once I got into the ring with the people I was sparring I was surprised how fit an fast I was. So I’m fully confident with the work I’ve put in and where I am at mentally that I’ll get the win on Saturday night.”