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Not Sleeping on the Sandman – Paddy Donovan says Lewis Crocker has to wait for his Full Attention

Paddy Donovan is ignoring ‘The Croc’ in the back of the room and keeping his focus firmly on the potential danger directly in front of him.

‘The Real Deal’ has been linked to Lewis “The Croc” Crocker and is expected to face off against the Belfast boxer in one of the biggest ever all-Irish fights later this year.

Indeed, if the Limerick southpaw defeats Lewis Ritson in Leeds on May 25 and the Billy Nelson-trained puncher overcomes the challenge of Conah Walker in Birmingham a month later Matchroom will get to work making the fight.

However, with Ritson, a former British lightweight champion and European title challenger, next up, that mega clash is notyet in the Andy Lee-trained fighter’s thoughts.

The 25-year-old. who is now ranked No. 11 in the world by the World Boxing Association, understands that he needs to avoid any distractions as he prepares to fight ‘The Sandman on the Taylor-Catteral II card.

“I do not look past any opponent,” Donovan said.

“I know Lewis Ritson is a really good opponent for me at this stage of my career. I’m really excited to be ranked No. 11 in the world and I’m checking all the boxes in training to be ready for any fighter, Lewis first, and then we can move on to beating whoever my managers and promoter put in front of me.”

As the bigger man and the fighter on the way up, Donovan will be favoured to defeat the former Paul Hyland Jr foe, still the Newcastle native, who was once a Matchroom star, represents the Munster man’s toughest test on paper.

“Ritson is a very good opponent for me,” he adds.

“This is the biggest test of my career, every fight from now is like my world title fight. I believe he will throw caution to the wind early in the fight, but I will match him for everything he does, and I’m going into the ring to win every battle, every moment, every round, and every fight,” he continues before once again attempting to play down Crocker talk.

“This is the fight I need, the challenge that will prepare me for bigger fights, especially against Crocker, or anyone else. For me, it doesn’t matter who the opponent is, I will be ready mentally and physically, and just be me.

Belfast, UK: Paddy Donovan v Williams Andres Herrera, Welterweight Contest. 27 January 2024 Picture By Mark Robinson Matchroom Boxing.

“Under the trusted eye of trainer and co-manager, Andy Lee, I am confident Paddy will be primed and ready to showcase his boxing skills and punching power on May 25th,” commented NYC-based attorney Keith Sullivan, Donovan’s co-manager. “This is Paddy’s breakout year. I don’t envy anyone we match him against, because he’s on a mission to fight for a world title. He’s hungry, and he’s earned it, but first he has to handle business in the ring with a very formidable Ritson.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years