The New York-based Rebel was set for an interesting Cork versus Dublin battle for the Irish light welterweight title, as boxing returns to the second city for the first time in a decade.
However, the agreed bout with Jay Byrne is now off as the Dubliner pulled off the card and the Kevin Cronin manged fighter, whose last win was a Boston-hosted victory over John Joyce, is now in search for a new opponent.
‘The Iceman’ would seem an obvious choice. The recent BUI Celtic title challenger did tell Irish-Boxing.com early last month that he wanted the fight and had no issue with traveling to the Neptune Stadium to have it on Murphy’s homecoming.
“Absolutely I’d take that fight in a heartbeat,” the Dub told Irish-boxing.com previously.
“I have no issue going to Cork whatsoever. I think I showed in my last outing travelling to the lion’s den is no issue when there is a good fight to be made.”
However, after news broke of Byrne’s withdrawal Team McMahon contacted to reveal the 24-year-old won’t be stepping in.
It’s not they are not open for the fight indeed manager Dave Murphy would love the fight for Celtic Clash 9, which looks likely to play out in a yet to be confirmed venue in September, but reveal McMahon can’t fight on the Martin Horgan run Leeside Revolution as early as July.
The issue is McMahon is carrying a slight knock from his BUI Celtic title defeat to Dean Sutherland in Scotland.
The Dublin welterweight prospect has a hand injury and his team feel he should at 100 percent for a such an important domestic clash.
“Unfortunately Keano isn’t in the running to fight Murphy in Cork next month,” Murphy told Irish-Boxing.com.
‘Listen that’s a fight we want and a fight he really wants. Keane would love to fight for the Irish title and it is a great fight for the fans. If Murphy and his team want to make it we can later in the year. It’s perfect for the next Celtic Clash or we could do it in December. It’s a pity we can’t step in now, but Keane has a bit of a hand injury. We have been to the doctor and he has advised against punching for a while.”
The withdrawal of Byrne at this stage isn’t ideal for the show, but Irish-Boxing.com understandss a strong replacement is being sought and the bones of a solid undercard has already been confirmed with more fights to be announced.