Guess Who’s Back? – Ryan Burnett hints at return from horror injury


Ryan Burnett [19(9)-1(1)] is on the road to recovery and a big comeback fight – and the Belfast bantamweight is showing some encouraging signs.

The Antrim Road fighter suffered a first career defeat when he was forced to retire on his stool between rounds 4 and 5 of his WBA title defence and World Boxing Super Series quarter-final with Filipino fight legend Nonito Donaire back in October.

What was later revealed to be a torn right oblique muscle, which also detatched from the bone, saw Burnett pulled out by trainer Adam Booth.

It was said by Booth that the 26-year-old would face a minimum of six months out of the ring and, just under half-way through this period, Burnett has posted a snap on social media of himself back working up a sweat in his home gym.

The Holy Family graduate had spoken in December of his inability to do any exercise but now seems able to do at least some work.

Indeed, Burnett would then later post a promise that he will be ‘back on top soon’.

It would be wrong to speculate too wildly on when the Youth Olympic gold medallist will return, however it does look like he could be back before the end of this boxing ‘season’.


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Burnett was eliminated by Donaire from the WBSS, with the upcoming semi-finals housing three of the four major belts.

Donaire is set to fight in a unification with WBO champ Zolani Tete while IBF titlist Manny Rodriguez defends against Naoya Inoue.

However, the future of the tournament looks to be in doubt, with dates for the semi-finals still to be confirmed, rumours of financial meltdown, and the withdrawal of Ivan Barynchyk from the light welter tournament due to a lack of communication.

UPDATE: In the last few minutes a date for Barynchyk’s fight with Josh Taylor has been confirmed – May 18th in Glasgow.

The 118lbs division’s other major belt, the WBC title, is held by Frenchman Nordine Oubaali who defeated Rau’shee Warren earlier this month.

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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