Ritson the reason Paul Hyland will win European title

It’s the fight people are pointing to as proof he won’t win the European title later this month, but Paul Hyland Jr [20(7)-1(1)] argues the Lewis Ritson defeat will prove to be the reason he becomes Continental lightweight king.

Once it was announced the 29-year-old had agreed to challenge Francesco Patera [21(7)-3] for his EBU strap in Milan those who made a quick boxrec check discovered they pair had differing results against their one common opponent. 

The Belgian born fighter who fights out of Italy reclaimed the European title when he out smarted Lewis Ritson just four months after the Newcastle banger stopped Hyland within a round to win the Lonsdale title outright.

The Belfast fighter has argued against suggestions you can predict the outcome of his Patera fight on the back of their Ritson displays. The fighter, who is trained by his father of the same name, has made the styles make fights point.

Indeed, when speaking to Irish-boxing.com he revealed that if anything the Ritson fight is the reason people should be backing him to become the second ever MHD promoted EBU title winner.

‘Hylo’ has suggested the Ritson defeat, the only blot on his career, was the perfect medicine for a complacency illness that he was beginning to suffer from.

That reverse, which played out live on Sky Sports, thought the soon to be European title challenger some valuable lesson and lessons he will bring into his June tilt.

“When you keep winning fights …..  you don’t notice, but you slack off a bit in training. You think things are getting easier and easier even though your moving up the ladder,” Hyland told Irish-boxing.com.

“See that one loss to Ritson, I learnt so much from that. I really learnt a lot from that fight stuff you can use in and out of the ring. There is also that thing where you don’t want to feel that again. You don’t want that feeling of defeat so you work harder and you keep aware of the things you learnt from your loss.”

Hyland warns against reading into his performance against Ritson
Hyland warns against reading into his performance against Ritson

Hyland knows complacent is one thing he can’t be going in against the 26-year-old champion.

The challenger is expecting a high paced, high octane pace against a fighter with a solid chin. With that in mind he has prepared for 12 rounds and the kind of fight he had against Stephen Ormond.

“This will be like the Ormond fight. It’s going to be 12 tough rounds just like that one. This boy is fit, he has a head of concrete so he won’t be easy to take out. That all means I have to be ready for a tough 12 rounds.

“I know he is fit- but so I am. I know every boxer says this, but this is the best camp I have put in and I feel prepared. I put in the work so I feel great physically and mentally. What ever he will throw at me I will match.”

Hyland will have to win on foreign soil if he is to win the extremely prestigious title, but isn’t too worried about traveling.

The Mark Dunlop trained fighter doesn’t foresee any form of the feared away day injustices materializing  considering he fights on a Matchroom promoted, DAZN broadcast show.

“It’s a Matchroom show and it’s going to be on Sky so I think everything will be fair,” he adds before stressing he is aware that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have to win big. 

“At the end of the day he is the champion so I have to go and rip it off him. I am aware of that, if it’s anyway close he is going to get the decision so we are prepared to go there ready to rip it off him. “


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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 sport for a living for 19 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