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McComb – ‘Bates fight was closest yet, but I deserved the win’

In probably the tightest fight of the evening, Sean McComb edged out George Bates last night to make the National Elite lightweight final.

The Holy Trinity southpaw used his length and jab to good effect throughout, but Bates managed to get inside and land some eye-catching shots and leave the judges’s with an unenviable task of splitting the two after a tense and cagey.

In the end it was a split decision victory for Belfast’s McComb and afterwards he spoke to about his clash with a familiar foe.

The European Games bronze medalist explained that it was his fourth fight with the Dubliner and that “it’s getting closer as you would imagine.”

“We both know each other inside out.”

“But I think I deserved the win!”

To an onlooker, especially after so many meetings, it may have seemed like there was bad blood between the pair, with showmanship exhibited by both – but McComb was quick to dismiss this, explaining that it was all just business and that “me and George are both friendly enough.”

The win was McComb’s second in these championships, following a quarter final victory over Intermediate champ and underage star Tiernan Bradley, and it has been a long season for the 23 year old. This calendar year he has had to contend with the 2015 Seniors, the European Games, the World Championships, and now the 2016 Seniors, as well as cope with a dubious split decision defeat to Albert Selimov in the Worlds that ended his hopes of early qualification to next years Olympics.

McComb admits to feeling aggrieved about the result, aruing that “I thought I won myself against Selimov and even watching it back now i felt I won the fight!”

This ‘loss’ however, has not massively hinder McComb’s preparations, and he explains that “the first week back was very tough, but after that I was back into routine and focused again.”

Indeed the motivated leftie has not let the bump in the road dampen what has been a breakout year for the crime-fighting lightweight, and he reasons that “it’s been a long tough year but I wouldn’t have it any other way!”

McComb fights David Oliver Joyce in Friday’s final, a repeat of the 2014 decider.

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: