Ruarl Dalton revealed he won’t stub out his cigars despite the fact he is about to venture into the pro ranks.
The cigar smoking promoter is a visual cliche still prevalent in today’s more anti smoking world.
However, a fighter with a preference for a stogie is as rare as good Cuban, but ‘The Rook’ isn’t your average character and claims kicking the habit may prove too hard.
Obviously it’s not the healthiest of past times and one certainly not to beneficial to boxing, but it’s a habit, that has and will, make the Belfast fighter standout. It will feed well into the ‘real character’ narrative that exists around Dalton and should help generate further excitement to his turning over.
“Jesus that’s a tough one to give up,” Dalton explained when asked about the famous habit.
“I don’t drink, I don’t do drugs, I have a wife 3000 miles away, so I need my cigars,” he laughs.
“if i was seeing they were doing damage to me then I would have to cut down on them, but if i die it better be with a cigar in my mouth.”
The fact the former talented amateur’s cigar smoking is so famous just shows the kind of profile he has. There is no doubt selling tickets won’t be an issue for the St James’ entertainer – and he thinks a strong following and a fresh out of the ring approach could play a big part of his potential pro innings.
“I think I would get a huge following due to where I am from and have the character to go with it too,” he adds.
An Ulster Senior Champion with ticket selling capabilities and a the potential to grab headlines will always appeal to the promoters.
The word on the street is there are a few interested in teaming up with the Belfast fighter with American citizenship, but the fighter himself wouldn’t say anything beyond ‘I’ll have an answer hopefully in the next month,’ when asked about managerial or promotional direction.
The Belfast fighter had announced he would turn over back in 2016 and was scheduled to debut in Dublin on the Red Corner Promotions show at the National Stadium that November.
At that time he was set to campaign in the super bantamweight division and was to be trained by John Breen.
However, he moved to New York and his pro plans were put on hold.
“I was suppose to ho pro in 2016, but went to New York to get my US citizenship. I was planning on staying for a month and turned into two and a half years because they fucked up my visa. I got it sorted it the end thankfully!”
Now home and with US Citizenship in his back pocket Dalton is eager to explore the pro ranks before it’s too late.
“I want to turn over because I don’t want to be sitting down in later years having regrets, saying ‘I coulda, woulda, shoulda’.”
Dalton is currently training with childhood friend, neighbour and former stylist of note Dee Walsh and is happy with how he is readjusting to the fight life.
“Training is going well with Dee at the minute. We are just taking it day by day and will see what happens, but my fitness has been improving quickly, thank God.”