He’s done it the hard way, and on Saturday Liam Conroy [9(2)-3(1)-1] has the biggest fight of his career.
The Barrow light heavyweight of Galway descent challenges for the vacant WBC Silver Youth title against Ference Albert at the Guild Hall in Preston.
The 23 year old tops the MGM Manchester card and is taking it all in his stride, telling irish-boxing.com that “I don’t feel any added pressure, I’m just fully concentrating on my job and our game plan and don’t think of anything apart from that.”
“Our gym has two other title fights on the bill as well so it’s a big night for us all as a team.”
In Albert [22(10)-9(5)], he faces a foe who Irish fans may only know from a 68 second loss to Jamie Cox in Dublin last year, but Conroy is taking nothing for granted.
“I’ve seen a couple of tapes of him but there isn’t much, in one of them he loses fast to Jamie Cox who’s a high level boxer so I’m not taking much from that.”
“From what I see he is a tidy boxer but I see spots where I will get my success on the night.”
Turning pro at 19, Conroy has had a tough apprenticeship, picking up a couple of losses, most notably in the first round of Prizefighter middleweights last year against eventual finalist Cello Renda. However, Conroy outlines how “it has made me a better fighter in the long run.”
“Every time I have lost it highlighted some things that I needed to change and I’ve made sure I’ve made those changes, whether it was in my preparations or technical things.”
“I don’t mind my record not looking the best; hopefully people will look at my record and underestimate me.”
Indeed Conroy points to his evolving style as proof of his improvements, noting how “when I first turned pro at 19 I was a front foot pressure fighter.”
“While I’ve been training with Johnney Roye at MGM Manchester and picking up a lot of experience.”
“I’ve become much more well-rounded and developed my footwork and defence.”
“I feel like as a team me and Johnney are learning how to use my strengths to counteract the strengths of whichever opponent I’m in with.”
Conroy feels this will all come to fruition on Saturday night, and believes it “will be one of my better performances, a mature performance sticking to my plan and winning in whichever way it comes.”
“It will be a good test from which we can see what level I’m at.”