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Feargal McCrory: Forget Devine, What about me and Hylo?

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With an Irish title fight between lightweights Paul Hyland Jr and Michael Devine looking unlikely, Feargal McCrory has thrown his hat into the ring.

Negotiations between Belfast’s Hyland and Luton-Wexford fighter Devine broke down last week, with the location of a proposed title clash seeming to be the major sticking point. Hyland promoter Mark Dunlop stated his intentions to chase the Celtic title for his man, but McCrory instead wants to step into the breach for an Irish title tussle.

Ever since he turned pro, McCrory has been open about his desire to secure big fights fast, and is continuing that pledge.

The John Breen-trained Tyrone youngster instigated a social media inferno over the weekend where he said “forget Michael Devine and Hylo for the Irish title, what about me and Hylo?”

“With absolutely no disrespect and all credit where credit is due, I’ll fight and beat Hylo!”

“I think people are going to want to see that fight, let’s make it happen.”

Many people were quick to point out that McCrory [2(1)-0] is not yet eligible for the Irish title having not fought in an eight rounder, and others didn’t see the Coalisland man as deserving of a fight with the battle-hardened Hyland [12(4)-0].

Hyland himself was open to the fight, possibly at the famous Ulster Hall, and told McCrory to “fight in an eight rounder and make yourself eligible for Irish title and I’ll fight you anywhere you want.”

With the eight round eligibility criteria seeming to be a major stumbling block, both Breen and McCrory have stated their willingness to meet Hyland in an eight round contest rather than waiting around for an Irish title fight.

26 year old Hyland is not overly keen on this route, and reasoned “why not fight your eight rounder, get a win under your belt and then we’ll fight a ten rounder for the Irish title and make it worth something.”

Currently managing five fighters around the weight, Mark Dunlop is keen to keep his options open and mused that “Everything is possible.”

“Joe Fitzpatrick has already told me he will also take Fergal out.”

“Exciting times ahead.”

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