Blessed, that’s how Owen Duffy [6(3)-3(2)] feels in the aftermath of a tv broadcast knockout defeat.
The Cavan fighter has every right to check the self-pity hotel and spend a week or two feeling sorry for himself.
After putting in a career-best performance in Girwood, Belfast last weekend, Duffy appeared to be on the verge of a terrestrial tv broadcast career-enhancing title win, only to be stopped with the finish line well and truly in sight.
Owen O’Neill [10(1)-0] snatched victory from the jaws of defeat by landing clean on the jaw of Duffy in the last round.
It had all the ingredients to make up the most heartbreaking of defeats – but the Shercock man was upbeat in the aftermath of the reverse.
In fact, he told Irish-boxing.com he was feeling ‘blessed’, fortunate to have good people around him and full of pride after producing a warriors performance in a Fight of the Year contender.
“I am back home safe and sound with my full health,” he tells Irish-boxing.com.
“I have been made very aware following Saturday night that I am surrounded by love in my life. I would call myself blessed!
“To be straight out honest I am very proud of myself. The Owen Duffy who turned up and performed on the night gave it his all. It wasn’t my night regards winning in the ring, but I am winning in life,” he adds before expanding on more general positives.
“I have a job as a professional boxer with the best professionals in my support team. A team who excel in their profession but are also extremely caring and I am fortunate to call them friends. My sponsors Advanced Fire Protection are amazing and their support made the run into the fight much easier. Padraig, Martina, and the team have been so supportive in recent days no doubt the start of a wonderful partnership. I run my own business and am surrounded by a wonderful team at Transform Ireland, I have an amazing family and group of friends and I am healthy.”
Duffy’s comfort with proceedings comes from the fact he knows he gave it all. He also points out that so engrossed was he in the war that he was unaware of who was ahead or behind in the compelling fight.
“I knew I was going to be fighting his fight and be in for a dog fight. And what a war it was. To be straight out I didn’t know who was winning, and I didn’t care. I wanted to make sure I left that ring with no questions, what ifs, regrets or ‘what if I did more’. I gave it 100% and it wasn’t meant to be,” he says before expanding on how lost in the fight he was.
“It doesn’t even cross your mind,” he answers when asked if he was aware the fight was so entertaining. “In such a fight, all you are thinking is hit and not get hit. You are thinking about winning the rounds, leaving everything in there, and save the reflection for after the fight. I feel it’s important that professionals remember you never lose in the ring you win or learn.”
There has already been talk about a rematch, and no doubt after two dramatic fights live on TG4, the broadcaster will want him back on their next show and in a good fight.
However, for now the light middleweight is happy to take time to reflect and enjoy a well earned break.
“It is time to reflect, reset and refocus for 2023. I have earned myself some downtime. I am going to let the body recover, take a holiday. I’ll enjoy some quality time over Christmas with my family and close circle of friends. I am sure 2023 will have lots to offer.”
There should be options and offers in 2023 because Duffy’s stock has risen after a good 2022, something he has noticed.
“100%. The support I have received through DMs, messages, and calls has been overwhelming. I still haven’t got back to them all. But I promise I will.”
Photo Credit Mark Mead