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‘Please don’t vote for me’ – Humble Barrett feels others are more deserving of Trainer of the Year award

Humble Niall Barrett has asked people to refrain from voting for him after his Irish-boxing.com Paddy Hyland Trainer of the Year nomination.

The Kildare man was nominated alongside James Tennyson coach Tony Dunlop, Shane McGuigan, O’Rourke’s Gym boss Steven O’Rourke, fellow emerging young coach Dee Walsh, and Pete Taylor.

Barrett earned his place on the list after overseeing Katelynn Phelan’s phenomenal win over Jessica Schadko. The coach, who also works closely with Gary Cully, masterminded the victory thanks to preparations beyond in-depth.

However, speaking on social media upon hearing about his nomination, the emerging coach asked people not to vote for him.

The Ultimate Hell Week survivor expressed gratitude for the nomination and admitted he was proud of the work he did with both Kildare fighters, but doesn’t feel he deserves to be crowned Paddy Hyland Trainer of the Year for 2020.

“PLEASE DON’T VOTE FOR ME,” he declared.

“While I am incredibly grateful and humbled that I have been nominated, I know for sure that I am not the best coach in Ireland so I would feel very undeserving of receiving this award.

“We definitely made the most of a strange year and I am very proud of the work that Gary and Katelynn put in to achieve their great results but when you compare CV’s it is clear who should win.”

There has been a lot of support for Barrett online, while Tony Dunlop’s work with James Tennyson hasn’t gone unnoticed and there is a groundswell of support for former Irish champion Dee Walsh.

However, Barrett’s vote is going the way of the experienced and extremely busy Pete Taylor.

“All the nominees are top class coaches who I admire but in my opinion I believe Pete Taylor to be the number 1 coach in Ireland due to his experience and the magnitude of his wins this year.

“He had huge wins with; Gary winning the Irish Title, David Oliver Joyce winning the WBO European Title, Tommy McCarthy winning the EBU European Title, while also guiding Luke Keeler to a World Title fight and Tyrone McKenna to the Golden Contract final. Also the achievements of Katie this year owe credit to the foundations that Pete built.

“Steven O Rourke also deserves massive credit this year for keeping his stable busy and getting them so many fights in a year where most people had none. He was willing to travel to find opportunities for his boxers in a year where it was easy to sit back and blame Covid for your lack of activity.

“But in terms of the magnitude of the fights the winner has to be Pete in my eyes,” he added before concluding with a positive word for the state of coaching in the country.

“To me it is very exciting to see the level of coaching rising in Ireland and hopefully we can all keep learning and make bring back many more titles to Ireland in the coming years.

“Congratulations to all the nominees and their teams.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years