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Jur next – Tommy McCarthy to defend against former EU champ on May 15

Tommy McCarthy [17(8)-2(1)] will make the first defence of his title against Alexandru Jur [19(7)-4(2)] in London on May 15.

The European Boxing Union confirmed the voluntary defence will play out on a Matchroom card topped by Terri Harper.

Having defeated Bilal Laggoune to become the 15th Irish fighter to buckle the EBU European title around his waist, McCarthy was ordered to defend against former WBC and IBF world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk.

Talks were underway with the Pole’s team and a deal all but signed, only for Wlodarczyk to end up in jail for breach of a driving ban.

With the mandatory challenger otherwise engaged the EBU have allowed the popular Belfast big man to make a voluntary defence meaning Jur will provide the opposition.

The Romanian, who fights out of Belgium, is a respected operator on the continent and a fighter deemed capable of big performances.

The 35-year-old won the Belgian title before winning the Francophone strap in Congo and continued to progress up the ladder.

He defeated two time EU champion Juho Haapoja, the Fin known to Irish fight fans for his war with Ian Tims, to claim the secondary European title.

However, despite seemingly paying his dues he never got the chance to fight for the EBU blue strap, until now that is.

The Mark Dunlop managed, McCarthy fighter will go in as favourite but will have to pass another Continential test in the kind of fight many felt he should take before exploring world options.

The news means there will be Irish interest in back to back Matchroom Sky Sports cards with Katie Taylor and James Tennyson scheduled to fight on May 1.

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