Paddy Donovan gave the first serious indication he is going to live up to his ‘Real Deal’ ring moniker with an eye-catching win in Wakefield tonight.
The 21-year-old navigated a step up from journeyman to domestic level gatekeeper in just his fifth fight with relative ease to prove he does have genuine article potential.
Donovan showed flashes of real natural talent, a Mensa boxing IQ and was very unfortunate not to become the first man to whitewash Jumaane Camero.
Armed with sizeable notice, Camero, a fighter asked questions of post 10-0 prospects at very short notice, had banana skin potential, particularly for a four-fight novice.
Indeed, the motivated English brawler argued pre-fight he would prove the Andy Lee-trained Donovan, who many in the know are extremely excited about, had bitten off more than he could chew.
Donovan didn’t quite chew the tough operator up and spit him out, no one has and not many will, but he did manage to pass his first real test with flying colours.
The former amateur standout showed a brilliant mix of panache and power en-route to a 60-55 win.
The OLOL graduate, who was given the ‘Real Deal’ name by the late Kevin Sheehy, answered all questions asked like a Mastermind winner.
The Top Rank prospect found an aggressive Camero in minute one, but his footwork and movement kept him out of trouble. A nicely timed uppercut and a left hand soonafter saw the English fighter change tact somewhat. Having tasted the power he was more cautious in his approach, allowing Donovan to impose himself – and that skill set and boxing IQ became apparent.
To his credit, Camero attempted to force the pace in the second, but Donovan was happy to counter off the ropes. The 21-year-old showed real flashes of talented, picking his shots superbly and bossing the fight with style.
The man Bob Arum labeled the prettiest fighter since Muhammad Ali wasn’t at his prettiest best in the third as he held his feet a bit more, sitting down on his shots, possibly eyeing up the chances of a stoppage win.
It allowed Camero to land effectively for the first time in the fight but, again, Donovan’s special abilities allowed him to win the round clear.
It was becoming a boxing masterclass in the fourth. Camero was again marching forward, but the ambition had been punched out of him.
An uppercut looked to have wobbled a fighter who was never stopped and Donovan looked like he felt a finish may be on the cards.
The fifth stanza proved something similar and going into the last and having took some superb shots it looked like the Predator was going to make the final bell.
Donovan wasn’t greedy going into the last and seemed content to settle for a points win. Some showboating satisfied the ego but, in truth, he didn’t need to add anything to make the performance or inevitable win any more eye-catching.
The victory see’s Donvan improve to 5(3)-0, while the game Camero slips to 10(3)–7(0).