‘I might actually box to instructions for a change’ – McKenna confident he can avoid Davies war

The lack of a live audience could prove a massive Golden Contract final advantage to crowd pleasing entertainer Tyrone McKenna [21(6)1(0)-1].

‘The Mighty Celt’ takes on long time verbal rival Ohara Davies for the right to sign a six figure long term contract with a big promotional outfit believed to be Top Rank.

The decider will play out at Production Park Studios in Wakefield on September 30 behind closed doors on September 30.

McKenna argues the lack of a blood thirsty crowd may allow him to produce the kind of measured performance his coaching team have previously begged for.

The southpaw has been continually asked to use his skills and size advantages to box his way to wins, but more often than not can not avoid being drawn into a crowd pleasing war.

The Pete Taylor trained light welter believes a lack of atmosphere may allow him to follow the game plan this time around, although the tension between him and Davies may not always allow for a controlled approach.

“This environment will suit me massively,” said McKenna.

“I usually play to the crowd in my fights, so with no fans there it should mean I’m not egged on to be dragged into a war.

“I might actually box to instructions for a change. If you watch me in sparring compared to when I’m in fights, I’m a completely different fighter, so I think this could benefit me.”

With what’s at stake it’s by far the biggest fight in McKenna’s career, the grudge with Davies only heightens that – as a result the Belfast fighter believes winning on September 30 would even trump winning a world title.

“This will be the highlight of my career, no matter what I do afterwards. This is the moment my life changes and I don’t think any feeling will be able to beat this. This will be number one on my achievements ever, no matter if I win a world title after this.”

Davies has promised to be less verbally aggressive from here on out. The new mask has slipped on more than one occasion, particularly when it comes to McKenna.

McKenna, himself isn’t bothered either way, in fact he wouldn’t mind a bit of an ill tempered fight week.

“I don’t care whether it’s humble Ohara or brash and loud Ohara in the build-up, it doesn’t matter to me. Everyone knows I love a bit of back and forth in press conferences, so if he wants to bring out the brash side then he can. It gets me more hyped up for fights.”

The Golden Contract super-lightweight final takes place on the same night as the featherweight final, as Ryan Walsh faces Jazza Dickens, while that evening also sees a light-heavyweight semi-final between Liam Conroy and Serge Michel on the undercard.

The other light-heavyweight semi-final sees Hosea Burton travel to Latvia to take on Ricards Bolotniks on September 26, with that fight broadcast live on IFL TV.

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