Matthew Macklin: Fitzy vs Spike will explode into a war

IF any fighter is living proof that domestic dust ups can both inspire you to go beyond your limits and tempt you to go to war its Matthew Macklin.

The middleweight contenders British title fight with fellow former Irish champion Jamie Moore was such a blood and guts battle it was awarded fight of the decade status. On that night famous night in 2006 Macklin pushed himself to the point of exhaustion and was eventually stopped before being brought to hospital.

The fighter has since gone on to become a World known name and challenged for the highest boxing honour on three occasions, but when speaking to Macklin did stress their is something different about derby dalliances.

‘Mack The Knife’ , who brings big time boxing back to Dublin on November 15 when he fights Sebastian Heiland in a WBC World title eliminator on a card that includes two mouthwatering all Irish clashes, claims civil war clashes bring extra out of you both in and out of the ring.

The former Irish, British and European champ suggests Micheal Sweeney, Ian Tims, Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan and Anthony Fitzgerald will put that extra bit in the gym with local pride at stake when the fight at the Three Arena come November 15.

“When I fought Jamie I was trained by Billy Graham and Jamie is from Manchester so we knew common people and had common friends. Some people that might support you in one fight might support your opponent if your in a domestic fight. There is always the shit talk element too that builds between supports and sometimes fighters,” Macklin told

“I fought Wayne Ellcock too, who is from Birmiingham and there was a bit of back and fort and shit stirring stoking things up.

“I think there is no doubt you up it five or ten percent when its a derby, You go that extra mile in training.”

The World title hopeful also suggests with so much hype surrounding derby dust ups game plans go out the window. The middleweight believes tactics may not be applied in the Irish title fight between Tims and Sweeney nor the grudge match between Fitzgerald and O’Sullivan.

Indeed in the case of the middleweight Cork v Dublin clash Macklin is certain the bad blood between the pair will so prove combustible it will at once stage force the clash to explode.

“Often in the case of those kind of fights tactics can go out the window. They are most likely high intensity and become blood and guts clashes so it can be hard to stick to a game plane.

“Spike or Fitzy might try and box, but I don’t think either will stick to it. At some stage that fight will ignite.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years