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Stevie Collins – “I have everything in my arsenal to be great, I just need experience”

They haven’t been together long, but Steve Collins Jr is already starting to feel the difference under new trainer Steven O’Rourke – and he showed some of these changes on Saturday night.

However, the Castleknock light heavyweight admits that he has a long way to go.

Following his Irish title loss to Paddy McDonagh during the summer Collins moved across Dublin from uncle Paschal’s Celtic Warriors Gym in Corduff to Steven O’Rourke’s St Mary’s BC in Inchicore.

In addition, Collins signed a managerial deal with Mack The Knife Global, and had his first fight with his new team in Belfast at the weekend.

‘The Wolfhound’ boxed on the Ginley Promotions bill at the Devenish Venue on Saturday and claimed a 59-55 points win over Edgars Sniedze.

Collins [11(4)-1(0)-1] has noticed the differences under O’Rourke, but notes that he still has plenty more to learn.

After the fight Collins explained to Irish-Boxing.com that “I am only with Steven a couple of weeks and I wanted to practice what we had been working on.”

“We have been working on movement. I know I like to roll a lot, but we were looking at being more agile on my feet and footwork. My defence has also improved a bit.”

“I haven’t overloaded with information because basically I have been with Stephen a few weeks. I know I have lots of things to work on, but we are focused on getting two or three things right first.”

However, coming back from his first loss, a frustrated Collins concedes that he looked for a stoppage too much. The 27 year old described how “I wanted to knock him out and I think focused on that for a lot of the fight whereas I should have just stayed calm and stuck to my boxing.”

“I was eager to hurt someone because I have been frustrated the last couple of months and I wanted to let that go tonight.”

“The old saying goes when you look for the knock out you don’t find it and that was the case tonight.”

“I should have thrown three and four shot combos instead of ones or twos.”

Sniedze was a game foe, and one who towered over Collins, and the Dubliner admits this did affect him. However, analysing the performance, it was a good night for Collins.

The rugby convert reasoned how Sniedze “wasn’t the opponent I expected. We were expecting a lad about my height and stocky like me so when I got on in with this lad it kind of threw me off.”

“I was ready to jab against a guy my height, but he was tall so we there was a bit more hunting involved.”

“At the end of the day I caught him with some good shots and he was able to stand up to them so fair dues to him.”

“Overall I am happy, but fighters are always self critical and I know I should have been a bit more mature, more patient and just let the knock out come.”

Collins is keen to be kept busy to ensure he keeps learning and improving. He retains top-level ambitions, but Collins knows he needs to build up his experience.

The rebuilding fighter outlined that “I want to fight guys at my level. I think that is where I will improve, learn and perform. I want lads like me, top prospects with decent records who come to fight.”

“I have the ability to be very good, but I am just lacking experience. I need opponents, who come to fight and come to win. Like this guy tonight, he wasn’t just here to lay down or take a cheque.”

“A couple of years of competitive fights and I will be ready to take on anyone. All I am lacking is experience. I have everything in my arsenal to be great, I just need experience.”

“I will fight every month if I can, that isn’t up to me. I asked my manager to keep me busy and MTK said they would do their best to make sure that happens.”

“Once I signed with them I had a fight date within a week, so I have great confidence in them.”

Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)

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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