Irish-Boxing.com’s #10YearChallenge


Social media has been full of questionable outfits, dodgy haircuts, and baby faces as people undertake the #10YearChallenge – posting a photo of themselves in 2009 alongside a current snap.

Now, we’re sure our readers aren’t keen on seeing what our writers looked like a decade ago but you might be interested to see what the site was like and what was going on in the world of Irish boxing.

So, we went through our archives and below bring you some of the biggest stories from January 2009.

The was one big card in Ireland that month, a DolPhil bill titled ‘Inner City Strife’.

The Citywest-hosted Friday night card featured Ian Tims, Luis Garcia, John Waldron, Stephen Ormond, and the epic first fight of the Robbie Long v Anto Fitzgerald trilogy.

Co-promoter Don O’Leary gave the show the big sell beforehand.

Martin Rogan, fresh from his win in the inaugural Prizefighter and subsequent shock victory over Audley Harrison, secures a Commonwealth title fight with Matt Skelton.

READ: Big Rogie gets Commonwealth title chance

The Belfast heavyweight would score a sensational 11th round knockout over the English fighter in Birmingham the following month.

The day after Rogie’s news, Matthew Macklin would also have a title fight confirmed for Birmingham.

READ: Matthew Macklin gets British title shot

The Tipp-Brummie secured a clash with British champion Wayne Elcock who he would destroy inside three rounds in March.

Also moving into frame for a title shot was Derry light welter Paul McCloskey who was installed at #1 in the European rankings.

READ: Paul McCloskey secures Euro top spot

The British champion had to wait until November for his shot but duly defeated Spaniard Daniel Rasilla to claim the blue belt.

One title fight that was announced but never happened was Brian Magee’s defence of his British title in Liverpool versus Tony Dodson.

READ: Magee to defend versus Dodson

The Belfast fighter was a late withdrawal from the March fight due to a hand injury and his title bout was not the only one to fall through.

EU super bantamweight champion Paulie Hyland looked set to box Ian Napa for the European belt in May.

READ: Napa-Hyland deal done

The fight would fail to materialise though once Napa shockingly lost his title to Frenchman Malik Bouziane.

During January the site also featured a fantastic interview from Kevin Byrne with Roy Sheahan who was, back then, looking to come back from the heartbreak of missing out on the Beijing Olympics.

READ: Roy Sheahan’s Long Road Back

However, in terms of Irish boxing news, January was all about one Bernard Dunne.

Following his shock defeat to Kiko Martinez in 2007, the Dublin super bantamweight rebounded with a trio of wins over solid Hispanics in 2008. Moving into 2009, talk began to swirl about a big fight.

Martinez was about to rematch Rendall Munroe for the European belt but Dunne was homing in on something bigger.

Tommy Egan would claim that he could set up a fight for Dunne with IBF champion Cristobal Cruz but this offer was ignored and, just days later, the Neilstown fighter’s clash with Ricardo Cordoba was confirmed – and the rest is history.

READ: Egan offers Dunne title shot

READ: Dunne secures Cordoba fight

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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: [email protected]