The saying goes that ‘if you’re good enough, you’re old enough,’ and it’s something Belfast hotshot Mathew Fitzsimons [2(2)-0] and his new team are ready to prove.
Following much frustration over a fight-less 2016, the big-punching super featherweight has joined up with Dee Walsh and Ray Ginley at the Emerald club in Lenadoon, and has signed with promotional newcomer Kieran Farrell.
One of Ireland’s youngest pros himself, Fitzsimons has a team to match. Farrell is just 26 years old, while between them Walsh and Ginley just about hit the 50 mark.
‘Thunder’ sees this youthful set-up as a big advantage. Speaking to Irish-Boxing.com Fitzsimons described how “training with Dee is amazing. He knows so much about boxing and has changed my style completely. He also sees potential in me to be a world champion.”
“Having Dee and Ray in the gym is brilliant. They both have completely different boxing styles. Dee is the backfoot slick counter puncher and Ray is more of a go-forward fighter. Both were brilliant boxers when they fought, so me and everyone training there will only benefit from them. It’s even better that they fought just a few years ago, it means they’re ‘in date.’ You see a lot of coaches who are outdated, where the sport has evolved and they haven’t evolved with it.”
With his new training set-up confirmed, Fitzsimons would then get the break he craved, signing with Kieran Farrell’s growing stable. The youngster will finally box again at the Devenish Complex, the scene of his first two wins, on Saturday April 22nd.
“Thank God I’m finally getting a break,” he admits. “It was Dee that sorted it out for me and Kieran said he sees potential in me and rates me highly. That’s what I need, someone to put the effort into me and get me good fights. I’m still only 20, so I’ve time on my side. My aim is to be 10-0 in to years time and then challenge for titles.”
Joe O’Neill and Gavan Casey look ahead to 2017 in episode 1 of The Irish Boxing Show