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No frills ‘Vanilla Gorilla’ just wants to fight

Dee Sullivan is admittedly no frills, but if his debut is anything to go by may have the ability to thrill fight fans over the coming years.

The Belfast cruiserweight punched for pay for the first time on at the Ulster Hall on Friday night and if his first pro outing is anything to go by it looks like he has the potential to entertain.Ā 

The Commonwealth Games medalist just wants to fight and he takes a no nonsense attitude with him to the ring and was involved in an entertaining undercard clash.

Handed a tough pro bow againstĀ Pawel Strykowski, a fighter who proved game against Paddy Nevin, Steve Collins Jr and Conor Cooke, the agriculturally framed big manĀ Ā just got about his work on the under card of Ryan Burnett’s ring return.Ā 

It meant he took some shots, but gave more than his fair share- and it’s an attitude he claims he will continue to show as he progresses through the ranks.

“I am not here for the glitz and the glamour. Look at me, do I look like I am here for glitz and glamour. I walked in here in an old Adidas tracksuit and got a taxi down here. If I go to the top I am that person that will still be in that tracksuit,” explains the recent National Elite semi finalist.

“I am here to fight not for the glamour. I am not going to change just keep me fighting. Let’s have it. I am in the gym anyway training everyday so why not just keep fighting move up the ladder as quick as we can.”

As first ever opponents the Polish operator is one of the tougher journey men to take. He has never been stop, is always willing to trade and certainly isn’t just a survivalist.

Whilst on these shores he has brought heavyweight’s and other cruiserweights rounds and Sullivan garners confidence from competing so well against one of the better journey men.

“He has been in a lot fights, he fought a lot of people and fought a lot here in Ireland. He is a very tough customer, he was game and tricky, but I thought I schooled him in there.

“ThatĀ  gives you confidence because it’s only my first fight. He was game and was throwing a lot of punches, he wasn’t just in there to survive, but I think I boxed well against him,” he adds before suggesting one shot in particular threatened to secure him a statement knockout win.

“He was a very very tough customer. I caught him with some good shots especially the left to the body. Someone said to me coming out of the ring that’s a lovely shot. We have really been practicing that in the gym and trying to get it perfect. We have been watching the likes of Canelo and all throw it. It’s not perfect yet, but I was definitley hurting him with them, sinking them in and I could hear him wince. If we can get it perfect we will start dropping people with it.”

Strykowski’s desire to fight meant a fast paced four rounds the ‘Vanilla Gorilla’ he admits he felt different having to fight a fourth stanza for the first time.

“The extra round was a different experience. It was a bit weird usually three rounds your going out there over three rounds, it’s fast paced and your trying to empty the clip. I think I still set a fast pace tonight. I didn’t try and go out there and slow it down.”


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 sports for a living for over 20 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