From head to head to side by side – Craig O’Brien to fight on title opponent’s first promotion

There is only one thing better than a boxing grudge and that’s a grudge settled in the ring.

While Carl Frampton and Nonito Donaire were respectful ahead of their fight last Saturday night they still tried to take each other’s heads off in front of 9,000 passionate fans at the SSE Odyssey Arena.

While those in attendance and those watching via BT or Boxnation enjoyed the 12 round WBO interim featherweight title fight they rejoiced equally in the pair’s attitude after the clash.

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The respect went beyond mutual and instantly moved into a friendship. There were kind words in the post-fight interviews in a dressing room exchange and the duo eventually went out for dinner with their wives. It’s a part of boxing that fans love and proudly broadcast certainly in Belfast the boxing capital of Ireland.

It seems Dublin fight fans will have a similar story to take pride in this coming Summer, as ‘The Beginning’ card has at the National Stadium on July 7th a fight that once again proves, that rather than take umbrage with a former foe, fighters seem to gain each other’s respect once they share the ring together.

BUI Celtic welterweight champion Jay Byrne has added promoting to his list of boxing roles and along with Assassin puts on what promises to an entertaining show in the National Stadium.

One of the fighters Byrne was keen to have on the show was the man that delayed his Irish title dream as recent as March 3rd.

Byrne went at it for 10 rounds with Craig O’Brien live on TG4 on the Last Man Standing card and came out second best in an Irish light middleweight title fight.

Rather than resent the inner-city Dub he offered him a slot on his debut promotional card and O’Brien duly accepted.

So effectively the champion will fight for a promoter he beat in just his last fight and a promoter that remains keen on a rematch.

‘The Iron’ is not expected to defend his title on the card but should be in a strong match-up

In another show of solidarity Assassin’s and JB Promotions will work with Boxing Ireland on the card.

Byrne along with Assassin Boxing, have made it clear their willingness to work alongside all promoters and the proof comes in the shape of Dylan McDonagh, Martin Quinn, and Conor Doherty all featuring on the undercard – the three boxers are all managed and promoted by ‘Boxing Ireland Promotions’.


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