New coach backs “special” Lynn Harvey to claim historic European title


A unique work ethic from trainer and fighter and the fact Lynn Harvey [5(4)-1(0)] ‘is something special’ means new coach Reg Byrne has full belief that she will be crowned Euroepan champion this Saturday night

The trainer has no worries regarding the freshness to his relationship with the Kilbarrack puncher ahead of her historic European title fight- and is backing her to pick up the minnumumweight strap this weekend, kick her career on to the next level, and put her name in the Irish boxing history books by becoming our first ever female European champion.

The fact she travels to Spain to face Catalina Diaz [4(0)-2(0)] for the vacant strap on March 23rd with virtually just one camp under the guidance of a new trainer may be a cause for concern for some.

However,Byrne assures no one should be worried as both trainer and coach have done everything possible to ensure ‘The Hunter’ claims the title and secures a world title offer in Madrid.

“No, not at all, this is not Lynn’s, as she would put it, first rodeo. I’ve myself worked along side some very high profile coaches over the years and have experience at world class level championships many times,” Byne told Irish-Boxing.com when asked if there were concerns surrounding a lack of long time history between the pair before admitting there is some pressure on him. 

“With this in front of me it definitely puts me under some pressure but that only makes me more focused on the huge job in hand and, being my first professional boxer, Lynn is getting all my attention, let’s say all my experience is going in to this.”

Then there is the Harvey factor.

“This kid is something special, let’s just say her work ethic is second to none and between the both of us we have left no stone unturned. I can honestly say we have our everything into this camp.”

Whilst it’s the pair’s first camp as official trainer and coach, the Angels BC boss worked alongside the European title challenger during her time at St Michael’s Gym.

Byrne manned the corner as Harvey returned from an 18 month lay off on the last Celtic Clash installment where she destroyed Kitti Kolompar.

He described how “I met Lynn in her last pro gym and worked with her on her last camp. She won her fight in the first round. That is when we pretty much came together.”

“After Christmas this year Lynn contacted me and ask me to coach her full time, then shortly after that the European title shot came about.”

There is no ‘ease in’ time for the pair as their first full camp sees them prepare for a vacant EBU strawweight title fight.

Whilst working to get Harvey ready for the bout, Byrne has also studied opponent Diaz and, having seen what the Spaniard brings to the table and what his charge has produced in the gym, he is confident of victory.

The Dubliner described how “her opponent is a tough kid and durable, however in my opinion we have more in our game than her. That is no disrespect to [Diaz] but that’s just as I see it.”

“I’m expecting a confident Lynn and a polished performance, sharp but aware of a possible 10 rounder. I don’t do predictions but if we think we can finish it early, we will.”

While March 23rd and the European title fight is game changer for Harvey it’s also a massive occasion for the new to the pro game coach and the team at Angels Pro Boxing.

“It would be a massive achievement to be the coach of a European champion and great platform for the future for Angels Pro Boxing, but the job in hand is about our team and team work. It’s not just a coach, a coach cannot do this on their own.”

“It is a massive effort from all of us,” he added.

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Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com