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Time to deliver – Eric Donovan ready to take the chance he called for

Eric Donovan [12(7)-0] is well aware he has to walk the walk after effectively talking the talk.

The Kildare fighter hasn’t quite been brash or bold in his talk, but has been extremely vocal in his pursuit of a breakthrough chance.

Having proven himself at domestic level and without the benefit of a time cushion considering he is 34, Donovan has been calling for a chance to prove he is next level worthy.

The Athy BC graduate flirted with an EU title tilt whilst under the guidance of Boxing Ireland and called out everyone from Carl Frampton to Jono Carroll.

Earlier this month Donovan was handed the kind of opportunity he has bellowed for as Matchroom confirmed the five time National Elite Champion would appear on their Fight Card series.

The Kenneth Egan-trained fighter moves up to super featherweight to fight Commonwealth champion Zelfa Barrett [23(14)-1(0)] live on Sky Sports and DAZN on August 14.

The 27-year-old has been signed by Eddie Hearn to become a star of Manchester and is the bookies favourite.

However, having called for a chance to show what he is capable of, Donovan is determined to show is worth.

“It is a massive fight, I called for it and now I have it. It’s up to me to deliver and I am convinced I will deliver a performance to be proud of,” the popular southpaw told Irish-Boxing.com.

“I don’t put any added pressure onto myself by saying this or that, I know where I’m at and I’m relishing the opportunity.

“When the fight was put to me I said yes immediately.”

With a ranking title set to be on the line, the now Mark Dunlop trained fighter claims victory could be career changing.

“I think a win will be massive for my career especially with the intended world ranking title due to be announced. That will put me in a fantastic position for major honours and huge fights.”

It’s a sizeable turnaround for Donovan. Worried he may never get a next level momentum injecting fight, the talented lilywhite admits he considered retirement on more than one occasion.

“I’m still buzzin, over the last year to 18 months I considered giving up but something inside me just kept pushing on hoping for a breakthrough. Thank God we have it now.”

To get the full benefit of the opportunity, Donovan has to take it. He admits that won’t prove easy, but is looking forward to the challenge.

“I expect a difficult fight. I know how he operates, he means business. He will present a serious challenge and I am excited for the test.”

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 sports for a living for over 20 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