Spike to face two-time Interim title challenger this weekend

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There has been a change of opponent for Spike O’Sullivan‘s long-awaited return to the ring this weekend.

The Cork fighter begins his journey down to light middleweight on Saturday at the Dropkick Murphys’s ‘Irish Festival’ at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion in Gilford.

The Leeside knockout specialist has been out of the ring since perforating his ear-drum for the third time in two and a half years during his seventh round retirement loss against Chris Eubank Jr last December.

O’Sullivan [22(15)-2(1)] was initially pencilled in to face Florida fighter Marquis Davis [8(5)-1(0)-2] on the boxing portion of the card – which he will headline alongside Murphy’s stablemate Mark DeLuca.

However there has been a change of plans for the 32 year old who will now meet Costa Rican Jaime Barboza [19(9)-8(2)] on the US East Coast.

Barboza will be a name familiar to Irish fight fans having been outpointed by Belfast’s Brian Magee for the WBA super middleweight interim belt back in 2011. Now 38, the Central American has since lost to current WBO super middleweight champion Gilberto Ramirez and was stopped in another WBA interim title tilt against Russian Stanislav Kashtanov.

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