Niall Kennedy sees fight with former World Title challenger fall through


Niall Kennedy [11(7)-0] was in the frame for a big fight live on HBO and Sky Sports, but may have fought himself out of it.

The undefeated Wexford heavyweight scored his eleventh straight win at the weekend with what he described as his best ever performance, stopping Aaron Chavers in the third round with bodyshots, breaking two of the American’s ribs in the process.

Kennedy though feels that the showing may have inadvertently caused him to lose out on a fight with a former world title challenger.

It was revealed on Newstalk 106FM’s Off The Ball this morning that the Gorey 33-year-old had been in talks to face Artur Szpilka [20(15)-3(3)] on the Matchroom USA bill in New York at the Barclays Centre on Saturday April 28th

The Polish southpaw challenged for Deontay Wilder’s WBC title back in January 2016 in what was a competitive fight until he was sensationally knocked out in the ninth round. A period on the sidelines ensued and he would make a losing return last July, being stopped in the fourth round by countryman Adam Kownacki.

The 28-year-old is due to return on the ‘Straight Outta Brooklyn’ bill which is headlined by a middleweight clash between Danny Jacobs v Poland’s Maciej Sulecki, and Kennedy was lined up as a potential opponent.

This fight, however, is no longer in play, with Kennedy explaining how “I had hoped to possibly get on the Matchroom USA show with Danny Jacobs, but I think that fight might not be happening now.”

“He could have watched the fight at the weekend – they’ve decided they don’t want it now, anyway.”

Kennedy’s Celtic Warriors stablemate Spike O’Sullivan had initially been due to face Jacobs in the headline fight but this clash fell through.

Supporting O’Sullivan looks to be the next step for ‘Boom Boom Baz’ who outlined how “I think Spike is possibly out in May, in Vegas, and we’re hoping to get on the undercard of that.”

Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)

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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