‘Peter Pan’ Stephen Ormond will never never give up on World Title chase

Back in early 2015, Stephen Ormond promised that this would be it.

His WBO lightweight title final eliminator versus Terry Flanagan was to be all or nothing – lose and he would step away.

That Valentine’s night in Wolverhampton he would be disqualified in the tenth round but, noting a bereavement in the build-up, he promised to go again.

The Clondalkin puncher managed to work his way into an IBF final eliminator versus Alejandro Luna the following Summer but some skulduggery on the scales saw him badly miscalculate weight and force the fight to be scrapped.

If that wasn’t the end of his world title ambitions in many peoples’ eyes, Ormond was completely written off in 2017 following losses to Craig Evans, where he faded and was dropped twice, and Paul Hyland, where he was dropped early but rebounded well and lost a controversial decision on the cards.

The determined Dubliner, however, has kept plugging away and on Friday night scored his biggest win in years.

Again being dropped, Ormond [26(13)-5(1)] again refused to give up and rose to outwork Ghanain Georgie Ashie on a BoxNation show in Scotland.

Defeating the WBO #14, ‘The Rock’ feels he is finally back in the world title picture and the 35-year-old won’t stop until he gets a shot.

“I refuse [to go away], I’m like Peter Pan,” he declared.

Ormond’s claims, and his call-out of new WBO champ Jose Pedraza, may be dismissed by some but the Celtic Warriors fighter insists that there’s reason behind his confidence.

READ: Stephen Ormond calls out World Champion

He outlined how “I’ll tell you now, I’m only coming into myself now. I’m living the life, in and out of the ring, I’m happy.”

“I’m enjoying it, I’ve a smile on my face going out there, I love it.”

This is different than before – even during his career-best period in 2013 and 2014 – with Ormond admitting that “I used to do training camp like an Antichrist and afterwards I’d go mad.”

“I’m in a good place. I’m better now [than when I defeated Derry Mathews], I believe I’m better now, I’m living right now.”

“I fell out of love with boxing, if you asked me a few months or a year ago, I couldn’t tell you who the world champion was, I didn’t care, I wouldn’t watch it, but I’ve got the love back for it now.”

Ormond has ignored all those who believed that his career at world level was over and feels he proved a point in Glasgow.

The veteran explained how “I refused to be beaten by Ashie because I know what I’ve got left in me. It’s a new me and I mean that.”

“If I’d listened to people, I’d have given up five years ago. There are fights left in me, let me tell you.”

“I don’t know what it is but I’ve always been a hard worker. My mind is now in the game. Mentally I’m in a great place. I believe it’s my destiny to be world champion”

“I’m happy – still crazy, but aren’t we all?”

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