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Seanie Monaghan left frustrated by ‘offer’ to fight Andre Ward

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Boxing is a murky business at the best of times, but Sean Monaghan has revealed the extent of some of the dodgy dealings that go on in the modern sport.

The Irish-American light heavyweight thought that he had been given the opportunity of a lifetime to fight pound-for-pound star Andre Ward, but it soon turned out that he was merely a pawn in a struggle between RocNation, [Ward’s promoter] and HBO.

In an exposé with Ring Magazine, Monaghan explained that he was asked by Roc Nation “would I be interested to fight [Ward] in his hometown on short notice.”

Never one to turn down a fight the throwback brawler “instantly said yes.”

However, what followed was a succession of hoops to jump through regarding purse, gloves, sponsors, and fight insurance – eventually leaving Monaghan’s promoters Top Rank with no option but to reject the offer.

One might assume that it was merely just a poor offer from Jay-Z’s promotional label, but Monaghan puts forward a different, believable, theory, explaining that “I believe Ward’s people didn’t want him in a rough fight three months before fighting Kovalev.”

“They had their guy in mind: [Alexander] Brand from Colombia. I think HBO didn’t want him and told Ward to fight me.”

Therefore, Ward and his team only approached Monaghan as a form of lip-service to HBO, and when Irish Seanie refused the offer, as they expected, it served to “create leverage to get Brand OK’ed.”

Read Michael Woods’s brilliant full piece here.

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