The Tokyo 2020 gold medalist confirmed she had rebuffed pro offers to remain amateur on last Friday’s Late Late Show.
It’s a choice 10-time Irish amateur champ Egan made after his 2008 Beijing success and believes Harrington was right to do the same. In fact, the Neilstown BC graduate went as far as to say he was ‘delighted’ she chose Paris 2024 over a pro journey.
Speaking at the launch of European Week of Sport 2021 which runs from September 23-30, Egan said: “I’m delighted, Kellie Harrington has made the right decision. It’s the decision I would have made if I was in her shoes.
“She’s 31 now, she’s an Olympic champion, she’s funded by the Sports Council, she has ample opportunities for advertisements and sponsorships for the next three years running up to Paris.”
Not long after returning to Ireland from Japan Harrington was linked with a move to the pros and with a massive Katie Taylor fight as a result.
Clondalkin native Egan points out that fight was never guaranteed and there are more certain ways to earn money.
“There was talk that if she went pro, she could have had a few fights and then fought Katie Taylor in Croke Park. It’s not as easy as that. Anything could happen in those years.
“Imagine she committed to the pro game and Katie Taylor got a bad injury or retired for some reason. What happens then? What does Kellie do then?
“She’s right to stay amateur, she can capitalise on what she’s done, she can make a few bob, she’s got a good head on her shoulders, she’s very grounded and she has a great family around her. I’m delighted that she made the right decision,” he adds before stressing back-to-back golds would really cement a legendary legacy.
“I think she can go out there and give a great account of herself and why not win gold for a second time? She has the opportunity to do that now.”
“If she goes on and does this double, then Katie Taylor will still be Katie Taylor because she’s on her own journey, but Kellie Harrington will be in a remarkable position in her own career.”