This evening in Dublin, JB Promotions and Assassin Boxing announced early details of their maiden show – an almost shockingly strong start which should capture fan attention.
An Irish light heavyweight title fight and a BUI Celtic light welterweight title fight will both take place on ‘The Beginning’ card at the home of Irish boxing on Satuday July 7th.
Mullingar southpaw Paddy McDonagh [11(0)-2(0)] will defend his green belt against Bristol-Galway hardman David Bailey [7(1)-0] over 10 rounds. McDonagh reclaimed the title last Summer versus Stevie Collins Jr but has not fought since, seeing niggling injuries and opponent issues force him out of numerous bouts.
The clash had been approved by the Boxing Union of Ireland previously and was at one stage set to feature on the Ireland’s Last Man Standing card in March but an injury to Bailey put paid to this.
Pending board approval, Victor Rabei [4(1)-0] and Karl Kelly [1(0)-1(0)] will also do battle for the BUI Celtic light welterweight title over eight rounds.
Moldova-born Rathmichael fighter Rabei’s future is perhaps at lightweight but the title fight will play out at 140lbs. The St Michael’s Inchicore puncher, having seen two fight dates in England this month fall through due to illness, will come into the bout off the back of an impressive all-Irish stoppage win over Mark Morris.
Monkstown’s Kelly last fought at super featherweight and seems to have scope to move down further but will jump up in weight for this opportunity. Following an entertaining debut win over Damain Lawniczak, the Dubliner elected to take a path forged by manager Byrne and jumped into a six-rounder with English hot prospect Lucas Ballingall, performing admirably.
Multiple fighters have been announced for the undercard, with “at least” one more title fight set to be announced in the coming weeks.
Showing encouraging co-operation between promoters and managers, the Boxing Ireland Promotions trio of Jobstown bantamweight Dylan McDonagh [2(1)-0], Crumlin lightweight Martin Quinn [2(1)-0], and West Belfast middleweight debutant Conor Doherty will all feature, as will the SK Promotions duo of Kilnamanagh featherweight Liam Gaynor [2(0)-0] and Ryston super fly debutant Eoin McGrath.
There are also slots then for Assassin middleweight trio Cillian Reardon [1(0)-0], Vladimir Belujsky, and Jordan Latimer [1(0)-0] along with Waterford duo Craig McCarthy [3(0)-0] and Dylan Moran [5(3)-0] and Belfast veteran Ger Healy [7(0)-5(2)].
A third debutant will be Bray middleweight Eddie Treacy who is said to have a tough opening assignment while there is another newcomer in Belfast lightweight Stephen Webb.
Finally there are two major Dublin names also pencilled in, with Irish light middleweight champion – a belt which he won versus Byrne – Craig O’Brien [8(0)-0] down to box as well as a return from a short-lived retirement for Kilbarrack light fly Lynn Harvey [4(3)-1(0)].
Promoter Jay Byrne – who may feature on the show but this is yet to be confirmed – said that “I am really looking forward to teaming up with Assassin and bringing together some spectacular shows.”
“I want to promote 50/50 matches and All-Irish clashes to excite our fans and build our next champions the real way. I can promise the best production a professional boxing show in Ireland will have seen and a stage that all fighters will want to be on.”
Kaz Evans of Assassin Boxing added that “I am really looking forward to Dublin now on July 7th. We really want to build on our success following Last Man Standing, and this is the perfect opportunity.”
“The fights will excite the fans. We have some phenomenal ideas for the production side of things too. We are not in the business of making easy matches. We want one’s that are TV friendly and that come to life, and excite the fans. We have a long-term plan in Ireland and it all starts here.’’