New Beginning Countdown: Ryan Burnett

‘New Beginning: Conlan-Granados’ is now only three days away, and irish-boxing.com continues its countdown with a look at the card’s main Irish support act – Belfast’s Ryan Burnett.

Burnett [9(7)-0] has been earmarked by many as a future bantamweight world champion and will be looking to continue his road to titles on Saturday. Fast, strong, and above all a brilliant boxer, the 23 year old is equally adept at giving a boxing clinic or ending a fight with one shot.

An outstanding amateur, Burnett won 94 out of his 98 amateur bouts. In 2010 he won silver at the World Youth Championships in Azerbaijan, losing controversially in the final to home boxer, Salman Alizade. Later that year Burnett exerted revenge over the Azeri by trouncing him in the final of the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore.

The Belfast starlet turned pro in 2013 with Ricky Hatton and scythed through his early opponents. After a prolonged period out in 2014, Burnett returned, now under the tutelage of Adam Booth, and has had an impressive 2015 so far.

In February he steamrolled Isaac Owusu, his toughest opponent to date, before making his Boxnation debut in March. Here he outclassed Faycal Messaoudene. April saw Burnett’s first fight in America, and the Belfast youngster scored a stunning first round knockout over Stephon McIntyre.

There was also big news for Burnett last month when the British Boxing Board of Control ordered that he and former world title challenger, Jason Booth, fight in an eliminator for the British bantamweight title. This fight may be on the undercard of training partner, Andy Lee’s, world title defence in Limerick this September – and Saturday’s card offers the perfect preparation for Burnett.

At the National Stadium, Burnett will face the Romanian-born Hungarian-based Csaba Kovacs [7(4)-5(1)] in an eight round contest. Kovacs is a dangerous opponent who recently took current Commonwealth champion, and potential Burnett foe, Jason Cunningham, the distance. Last year Kovacs also upset Scottish prospect Iain Butcher. Burnett will be aiming to show that he is a level above on Saturday.

Doors open at the National Stadium at 6pm and tickets are available from ticketmaster.ie. ‘New Beginning: Conlan-Granados’ will also be shown live on Boxnation from 7pm.

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie