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Frank Warren believes he has just signed Ireland’s best current amateur

Frank Warren believes he has signed Ireland’s ‘finest amateur talent’.

The Queensbury boss today confirmed he added Willo Hayden to his stable of fighters and appeared very excited to do so.

The veteran fight maker believes he has tempted the best active Irish amateur to ditch the vest and turn over. It’s a bold claim considering the wide-ranging and varied talent among the Irish amateur set up and a surprising shout considering Hayden hasn’t fought as a senior.

However, Warren is convinced he has a world level star in the making on his hands.

“I am both delighted and excited to be adding Willo to our ranks. He was undoubtedly the finest amateur talent in Irish boxing and I am looking forward to him showcasing his ability on our shows and to a wider audience on BT Sport.”

“We are continually looking to build young stars for the future and I am confident Willo possesses the application and natural ability to reach the very top of the sport. Much the same as with our other exceptional young fighters.”

At just 19 years old the Crumlin BC graduate has plenty of time to develop and Warren assures he won’t rush a fighter who has been sparring pros since he was 15.

“Our first job is to get him the experience he needs and he won’t be rushed.

“We will deliver the right fights for him at the right time and I am sure boxing fans will enjoy watching his development and progression towards title contention.”

Hayden joins John Joyce, Edward Donovan and Jason Harty as Irish underage standouts on the books of Warren, while Caomhin Agyarko, a fighter who made an impact at senior amateur level and British super featherweight champion Anthony Cacace also become stablemates.

Hayden is expected to remain in Crumlin where he will train under Phil Sutcliffe and his father Paul and is set to debut in the near future. The new to the pro scene operator has proven he can be a bit of a character when calling out UFC star Khabib Nurmagomedov. Hayden wasn’t too happy with the Russian questioning McGregor’s sparring and let fly.

“How about you back up your mouth and organize a time and a location for me to fight you. I’m only a “little kid” so this should be no problem for you? I can guarantee you that I will make you quit like the chicken you are.

“From your own words, “Die like a samurai, don’t chicken out please”. Now all you have to do is put your own words into action.”

Hayden was a standout underage amateur winning European Schoolboys (U14) gold in 2016 and picking up 11 Irish titles at various age groups along the way.

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com