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She’s Coming Home – No, Not Katie Taylor, Irish Boxings First Trailblazer

Katie Taylor won’t be the only fighter coming home next week.

The Irish sporting great fights in Ireland for the first time since she turned professional in the 3Arena on May 20, partaking in one of the most celebrated sporting events to come to the country.

It’s the kind of moment that will add to the Icon’s legacy and another trailblazing event that the next generation will cite as an inspiration in years to come.

Fittingly the person who inspired the game-changing boxer and the hero of the hero to a generation will also come home for a fight night that will be a landmark for both Irish and women boxing.

Drogheda’s Deirdre Gogarty will be ringside at the undisputed light welterweight world title fight between Taylor and Chantelle Cameron on Saturday May 20 and will get some spotlight moments of her own during fight week.

In fact, she will be given her own homecoming in the form of Drogheda. There will be an ‘evening with’ event on Friday May 19 in The Crescent Concert Hall, with all funds raised going toward The Deirdre Gogarty Legacy Committee’s statue fund.

A press release from the Deirdre Gogarty Legacy Committee released this morning said:

In 1991, Drogheda woman Deirdre Gogarty stepped into the boxing ring at the back of The Shannon Arms in Limerick for an ‘illegal fight’ that would not only become legendary but would mark the beginning of an incredible fighting career for Deirdre. This would go down as the first
boxing bout on Irish soil between two women, although it was unsanctioned. Unable to get a boxing license in Ireland she made the difficult choice to move to the USA and turn professional to chase a World title. In 1997 she achieved that dream in becoming Ireland’s first ever female boxing world champion.

The Committee are proud to announce that almost 32 years on from that unsanctioned fight in 1991, that Deirdre Gogarty is returning to Drogheda for a special week in Irish Boxing history. On the week that Katie Taylor makes history in headlining a huge card on her
homecoming in the 3Arena, she has invited her heroine to sit ringside for it. Deirdre was the only female boxer she knew as an 11 year old, and wrote letters to her growing up.

“This is one of my idols who I looked up to growing up. So to have her ringside hopefully when I make history on May 20th will be an absolute dream” – Katie Taylor.

32 years on from having to fight in a beer garden in Limerick, with no family or friends as women weren’t allowed to box under IABA rules in 1991, Deirdre will now sit front and centre for one of the biggest boxing shows in Ireland’s history as Matchroom Boxing’s guest of honour.

“It will be an amazing and emotional experience to sit ringside at such a momentous event, on so many levels. To think that women weren’t allowed to box in Ireland, to now headlining one of the biggest fights in Irish history is incredibly gratifying. It makes all the struggles,
frustrations, and setbacks of my career worthwhile when I see the women of today get opportunities they have rightfully earned.” – Deirdre Gogarty.

On the eve of this historical occasion, Deirdre’s own homecoming event will be taking place in Drogheda. The committee organised a fundraiser in The Crescent Concert Hall, Drogheda, Co Louth called “An evening with Deirdre Gogarty” on May 19th. This event is a fundraiser to erect a statue of Ireland’s First female professional boxer and world champion Deirdre Gogarty in her
hometown of Drogheda.

“Coming home to Drogheda, especially the week of the Katie Taylor fight feels like a second homecoming for me. To go back to the place where it all started will be very emotional. There were so many firsts and significant moments for me in Drogheda that changed my life
and unknowingly at the time, the future of women’s boxing in Ireland. From meeting my hero Barry McGuigan in Weavers pub in, to staring out my fathers dental at Wellington Quay at Drogheda Boxing Club, who were the first to give me a chance to prove women could
box. These moments are the ones I cherish when thinking about home.” – Deirdre Gogarty

This night is an opportunity for the public to hear about the story from the Woman herself. The event is to not only to highlight Deirdre’s story and how it all began in Drogheda, but also to tell the story of the chronological history of women’s professional boxing on the Island.
On the week of Katie Taylor’s historical homecoming fight, we see this as the perfect time to highlight the journey women have made in the sport.

To tell this story with Deirdre are other trailblazers in women’s professional boxing. Below guests

Ann-Marie Griffin who fought Deirdre at the Shannon Arms Hotel in Limerick on 30th June 1991
in the Islands first all female bout, although it was unsanctioned.

Jimmy Halpin & John Mc Cormack: Deirdre’s coaches in St.Saviours Boxing Club from

Deirdre Nelson who was the second professional women’s boxer from the Island who fought for a
world title in her first fight.

Christina Mc Mahon was the first woman to obtain a BUI license and box in the Republic. She
went on to become WBC Interim Bantamweight World Champion.

Other Special guests include:
Eric Donovan – Former EU European Super featherweight champion and former Irish
Featherweight champion and local based.
Ciaran Clarke current professional MMA fighter signed with Bellator. Local athlete and advocate
for the statue.
Kate Radomska – a current Boxing Union of Ireland license holder who boxes the following night
on Katie Taylor’s undercard vs the UKs Maisey Rose.
Siobhan OLeary – Ireland’s first female professional boxer to fight for Celtic Nations title.
Details of Event:

Venue: Crescent Concert Hall, 81 Trinity St, Drogheda, Co.Louth, A92YX52
Time & Date: May 19th 2023 (Doors Open at 7pm – Show commences 7.30pm)
Ticket info: Search “An evening with Deirdre Gogarty” on Eventbrite. Adult: €12, Child (Strictly 16
and under): €6
For press enquiries or further details contact Ciaran Mc Ivor at


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years