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Josh Warrington’s Robbie Keane celebration explained

Josh Warrington celebrated winning IBF featherweight title in Leeds last night Robbie Keane style.

The Leed’s fan pulled out Ireland’s record goal scorer’s trademark celebration in the ring seconds after the referee had stepped in and stopped his world title fight with Kiko Martinez in the seventh round.

The now two-time world champion attempted the tumble and shoot to the sky action that followed so many of Keane’s goals.

Warrington is a Leeds fan and possibly the boxer with the strongest links to any football club and its support. Keane spent a season-and-a-half at Elland road 20 years ago, scoring 18 goals, which would have been celebrated with his trademark cartwheel.

It’s quite possible an 11-year-old Warrington took a shine to the Dubliner in his brief stint at the club he supported and was paying homage, although there is a more likely explanation.

Leeds, UK: Kiko Martinez vs Josh Warrington, IBF Featherweight World Title 27 March 2022 Picture By Mark Robinson Matchroom Boxing Josh Warrington celebrate his 7th round stoppage of Kiko Martinez

The Leeds Warrior was walked to the ring by Leeds United full-back Luke Ayling, Ayling scored an extremely important injury-time winner against Wolves the week previous and tried to imitate the Irish striker’s celebration, and it was most likely that he was copying.

In fact, the execution suggests it was exactly that because Chinese whispers style the celebration gets further and further away from the original at each attempt.

“I tried to do the Robbie Keane but I couldn’t land the cartwheel, which was a bit disappointing. I’ll have to work on that, ” Ayling said the week previous.

Keane responded via social media letting the Leeds captain know he was ‘free on Thursday’ if he wanted lessons.

After the victory over Kiko Martinez, Warrington was heavily linked to Leigh Wood, Michael Conlan’s recent defeater. However, the fact he suffered a broken jaw in the fight suggests a summer meeting between the pair may prove too soon. Which in turn could open the door for a Wood – Conlan rematch.

Photo credit Mark Robinson Matchroom

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 sports for a living for over 20 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