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‘Let me beat up Ritson’ – Tryone McKenna wants ‘The Sandman’ in Belfast

If Matchroom do come to come back Belfast, Tyrone McKenna [21(6)-2(0)-1] wants the promotional outfit to bring Lewis Ritson [21(12)-1(0)] with them for him to ‘beat up’.

With the growth of James Tennyson from entertaining card filler into ‘The Irish GGG’, ‘P4P one of boxing’s biggest punchers’ and one of ‘the most entertaining fighters on the planet’, it now looks likely the one time St Kevin’s Hall and Devenish bill topper will headline a Sky Sports show at the SSE Arena in 2021.

Eddie Hearn has already stated he wants to bring Jorge Linares, a fighter who has won world titles at three different weights, to the capital of Irish boxing to fight the lightweight world title hopeful next year.

Tommy McCarthy’s links to MHD, Matchroom and the fact he is Ireland’s only reigning European champion means the chief support role is likely to be his.

Eric Donovan and Paul Hyland Jr, particularly if he claims the British light weight title in February, will also benefit as Mark Dunlop managed fighters and there should be opportunities for other Irish fighters.

One Belfast operator well aware of that is Tyrone McKenna. The Golden Contract finalist, one of Irish boxing’s more entertain operators and marketers see’s Matchroom’s Belfast plans as an ideal opportunity to secure a clash with Lewis Ritson.


The Newcastle native is signed to Matchroom, is now at McKenna’s weight and a match, considering both fighters style, would a meeting of the pair would be as close as you can get to a guaranteed entertainer.

McKenna’s most recent clash was a points reverse suffered at the gloves of long time rival Ohara Davies. Even more painful for ‘The Mighty Celt’ it came in the final of the Golden Contract and prevented him from securing a a six figure contract with a promotional outfit believed to be Top Rank.

Manager Jamie Conlan remained upbeat post the defeat, suggesting a fight on Michael Conlan’s annual St Patrick’s Day New York card would be an ideal return. The former world title challenger also suggested a fight with Ritson would be a good option.

The one stumbling block may be the fact Matchroom see ‘The Sandman’ as a Newcastle headliner. The may not see the value of risking a Northern English ticket seller in Belfast.

Ritson has Irish previous having fought and stopped Paul Hyland Jr for the British lightweight title.

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