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Ryan Burnett rivalry helps inspire Mick Conlan

A friendly rivalry with fellow Belfast fighter Ryan Burnett and the other young talents in Adam Booth’s gym has proved inspiring suggests Mick Conlan [10(6)-0].

The former world amateur champion swapped LA for London and teamed up with Booth last year, joining a stable that includes hot prospect Josh Kelly and former unified world champion Burnett [19(9)-1(1)].

The Falls Road fighter, who headlines The Theater at Madison Square Garden for third St Patrick’s Day in a row this weekend, points out he is both enjoying and improving in the new environment.

As well as learning from ‘The Dark Lord’ also claims the “healthy competition” in the gym is ideal in terms of his progression.

Conlan gets sparring from old amateur opponent Burnett as well as a number of visitors to Boxing Booth.

“Of course there’s healthy competition. Everyone in the gym is very talented, sklled and technical,” said Conlan.

“We’ve all got good amateur pedigrees and we all like to try and outdo each other. That edge of competition is what you need in a gym full of young fighters.”

“I still feel like a young fighter even thought I’m probably the oldest out of all the fighters in our gym. I still think I look young, anyway.”

Booth was in the corner as Andy Lee won world middleweight honours and the Limerick man has often talked about how he had re-adjust and even re-learn certain things under the attention-to-detail-keen English coach.

However, things don’t seem to have been that intense for Conlan who boxes grizzled Mexican Ruben Hernandez Garcia [24(10)-3(1)-2] on Sunday night.

The Top Rank fighter notes how it has been more about perfecting certain things rather than learning.

Conlan explained how “I wouldn’t necessarily say that I’ve learned new things but it’s more a case of perfecting them. It’ll always be the aim to make right the little things we get wrong.”

“Even if it’s the best part of my game; we can always tighten things up.”


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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 sports for a living for over 20 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