‘I hated his guts’ Ciaran McVarnock shares the one fight he regrets got away

Regret may be a bit strong but Ciaran McVarnock has revealed the one fighter he would have loved to have shared the ring with.

‘Bunty’ last week confirmed he was hanging up the gloves at the tender age of 29 – and told Irish-boxing.com he retired because he had lost that extra bit of bite.

The Belfast super feather exits stage left content with what he achieved and content in the knowledge, he poured his heart and soul into trying to make it.

However, there was one fight he felt got away – and one clash he wished would have happened.

“I wanted the Joe Murray fight,” McVarnock explains to Irish-boxing.com.

“I wanted that so bad I even went to his shows to try build it up, start trouble and make it happen. I hated his guts. I wanted to really smash his head in.”

There was a stage when McVarnock and the 2007 World Amateur Championship medal winner looked on a collision course despite the fact they had differing levels of experience. Indeed, McVarnock reveals talks with his former gym partner and friend had taken place.

“There were talks of it happening but it never materialized,” he continues before declaring he would have defeated the former amateur standout and brother of John Murray.

“That fight would have put me right up there when I would have beat him. I would have made him look like a journeyman. The best joe Murray would never have even beat the average me. That’s how confident I was of beating him.”

McVarnock’s career highlight is a bit of a left-field choice. The 29-year-old’s didn’t cite a big win or a brilliant performance rather a pre fight chat with Tyson Fury.

“My highlight was when tyson fury sat in my changing room talking to me for about 40 minutes . The guy is so smart even away from boxing . I could have happily not fought that night and went home and still been happy. The heavyweight champion of the world in your changing room having a chat with you about everyhting . Unbelievable!”

McVarnock has revealed he will make up his mind as to what he will do next after a short break. It appears he won’t be short of options.

“I’ve been asked to do a few things with commentary and interviews within boxing. It’s crazy soon as I announced retirement I was offered all sorts of opportunities, which I am really grateful for. I will go on holiday to Los Alcázares next week with Nicole and then I will think more about the future. I’m sure boxing will still be a part of my life. I’d like to do some cross-community stuff, helping bring both sides together as being in a mixed relationship I understand. Thats a big aim for me. I would love to see boxing bringing both sides together more.”

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 sport for a living for 19 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