Roscommon Feather Goes for Golden Gloves Gold at the Garden
The little known Sarah Cunningham is just nine minutes away from collecting one of most prestigious titles in U.S. amateur boxing in the most famous of fight venues.
The Brooklyn resident fights in the Ring Masters/Golden Gloves featherweight final at the famous fight venue that is Madison Square Garden on Thursday night.
Victory would see the Roscommon native collect a famous accolade just five years after she took up the sport post turning 30.
It would also be well earned reward for the 36-year-old who invested so much time and effort in being a boxing success.
“I juggle a lot with my full time career and demands of holding a leadership role while also remaining disciplined to a sport and passion that has taught me the greatest values of life,” the Connacht boxer, who seems to have a real spiritual connection with the sport, tells Irish-boxing.com.
“This would mean everything to me- I wake up at 430am to get 2-3hrs of training in before a demanding day of work. I am devoted to this sport so a victory would solidify all of that.”
It’s success the Six Boroughs lightweight Champion flirted with last year when she fell at the final hurdle, suffering defeat in the decider, meaning Cunningham will be familiar with the stage. Her final foe will also be familiar to her, considering they fought twice previous. Cunningham won both those bouts but is adamant the past will have no baring on how she approaches Thursday’s massive fight.
“I’ve beaten this girl twice but that doesn’t make it an easy fight,” she adds.
“I know I can do it again. I just have to be smart and composed as she’s wants this victory just as much. It really comes down to who’s going to dig the deepest when we are both in trenches fighting our hearts out.”
Cunningham’s road to the final like her boxing career began in New York, she explains she never entered a boxing ring in Ireland.
Once she stepped through the doors of the Mendez Boxing Gym a connection was made that it appears will never be broken.
“I’ve always loved the sport of boxing but didn’t actively compete or even think I was capable of competing until I moved here over six years ago.
“My Irish mate Sean was training to this truly special boxing gym called Mendez and the rest is history! Henry and Andy took me in, made me part of their community and I’ve never looked back. I now train with Leo Morales and Moises Sanchez who were both from Mendez. I have the most wonderful sparring sisters who I’ve nothing but love and appreciation for,” she adds before pouring cold water on any pro talk!
“If I was ten years you get absolutely but I’m 36 now so a pro career might not be the greatest decision to make. I’ve never been so passionate or devoted to anything else so I hope to continue contributing to this sport for as long as humanly possible.”
Photo credit Henry Deleon @deleonphotograhpyy