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Ken Egan sets Kiko Martinez target for Eric Donovan

Kenneth Egan believes it’s now time for Eric Donovan to be given the chance to take some ‘serious scalps’ and wants current European champion Kiko Martinez to be one of them.

‘Lilywhite Lightning’ is back fighting fit and keen for a massive 2019 after a hand injury and frozen shoulder threatened his career late last year.

Having turned pro at 30, three-and-a-half years ago, Donovan was always fast track-keen but, havingeffectively been robed of a year. Donovan told Irish-boxing.com last month that he wanted fights that would open a pathway to European success in 2019.

His former amateur teammate and current coach Egan agrees, pointing out there is no reason for a fighter of the Kildare favourite’s talent to be fighting journeymen at this stage of his career.

Indeed, it seems the Beijing Olympic silver medallist and the rest of the team don’t even see value in Donovan having a ring-rust-shaking return.

Donovan will top the soon-to-be-announced ‘Celtic Clash 8’ card and looks set to feature in a major contest.

It’s due time for the Boxing Ireland fighter to be stepped up says Egan.

“I don’t want any journeymen”, Egan said when speaking to the42.

“He doesn’t need journeymen. We don’t want four rounders. We don’t want journeymen that we know he’s going to blow away.”

“He’s been in with the best in the world as an amateur. He needs to be starting now to get some serious scalps on his list,” added the Dublin fight man who has little time for record padding or any of the usual pro boxing bull.

Donovan [8(4)-0] has been honest about holding a European title dream and Egan believes a bout with the current holder of the blue belt would be ideal for the southpaw.

The National Stadium’s favourite son believes Donovan would easily outpoint former Bernard Dunne defeator, Carl Frampton foe and a man well known on these shores, Kiko Martinez.

“Kiko Martinez would be an ideal opponent for Eric. But Eric needs to have ultimate conditioning. He needs to be ready to box, on his toes, for 12 rounds.”

“Eric’s not a big puncher. He knows that himself. He’s not a banger. He’s not a knockout artist. We all know that. So what does Eric need to do? He needs to really polish up on his boxing skills.”

“And I think if he did get in against Kiko Martinez, that’s what he would do. He would box Kiko. Make Kiko miss and just beat him easily on points. In an ideal world that’s the opponent we want in 12 months or 18 months.”

Donovan would be keen on the scrap, as well as one with upcoming EU title competitor Dennis Ceylan, but having become more and more educated on all things boxing business since turning over – he knows he may have to work his way in to mandatory position to secure a fight with the tough and well-travelled Spaniard.

“I’d love to fight him, I really would”, he says. “But to be honest with you, I don’t think he’s after titles anymore. Where he is in his career now he’s about money.”

“It’s about financial security for the future. So he’s going to want big money. We just haven’t got that kind of dollar to attract him. And that’s just the reality of it. I’d love to fight him. There’s no doubt about that.”

Kildare Boxing is proudly supported by Liffey Crane Hire

Photo Credit: Sharon Flanagan


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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