‘Silent Assassin’ O’Rourke quietly going about his business

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is liffey-crane-hire-1.jpg

Ryan O’Rourke [1-0] was happy with how he kept his cool during his January debut.

The 20-year-old Dubliner became the first Irish pro newbie to punch for pay in 2020 when he fought Qasim Hussain [4(0)-100(2)-2] in Kengsinton on January 30.

The veteran survival specialist – Hussain has only been stopped twice in 100 defeats – tested the St Michael’s Inchicore graduates temperament in the second half of the fight.

The Sheffield native went full panto villain in the final two rounds, but O’Rourke, who it has to be said always appears level headed, didn’t react, wasn’t tempted to divert from the game plan and boxed his way to a shut out win.

Reflecting on the win as he heads into a second pro outing this weekend, that calm approach is the main plus he takes from the fight.

“It was good just to get the first out of the way,” O’Rourke told Irish-boxing.com.

“I felt it was a good show to make my debut on , a dinner show , a bit different from a load of people screaming and going mad.

“I thought my performance was good and I did well not to get involved in what he was trying to drag me into , him talking and shouting trying to drag me into a fight.”

O’Rourke will need a similar kind of mindset as he faces another one of boxing’s Bear Grills equivalents in Bristol on Friday.

Like Hussain, Chris Adaway [10(1)-63(8)-4] won’t give O’Rourke much opportunity with regard to securing a knockout.

The veteran of nigh on 80 fights also has play to the crowd tendencies and more interesting comes into the fight on the back of upsetting a debutant.

The 26-year-old road specialist took ‘The Silent Assassin’s’ stable mate Victor Rabei the distance on the now BUI Celtic champions debut, so O’Rourke has been told what to expect.

“I fight Chris Adaway , an experienced and respected journey man. Victor fought him already so I had a little look over that , hopefully he’ll come out of his shell a bit more than my last opponent and give me a few opportunities to counter and land some nice shots.”

It’s a quick turn around for the fighter who is trained by his father- Stephen O’Rourke. The fighter is happy to be kept busy and it is something he will have to get used to considering he has a March date already lined up.

“It’s great to have another fight date so quick after the first. I knew before the first that I’d be fighting on the 21st and I’ve another date set shortly after this one,” he adds before reflecting on the difference he noticed between three amateur rounds and four pro rounds when making his debut.

“The only difference I felt from the ams was the pace and not having to do everything at a frantic pace , being able to slow down , think and pick your shots.”


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