Tyrone McCullagh ready to put on stand out performance on MTK debut

Tyrone McCullagh [5(4)-0] is expecting a taste of his own medicine on Friday night, but a tough test is just what the doctor ordered.

The Derry super bantamweight, a notoriously awkward fighter in the amateurs, has his first fight under the MTK banner at the weekend, and plans to impress on the inaugural Ginley Promotions bill.

The 26 year old has evolved from being the defensive maestro who caused trouble for the likes of Mick Conlan in the amateurs, to become an incisive and clinical stylist in the pros. McCullagh has marked himself out as one to watch in the past 18 months and will be looking to continue building momentum on the card at the Devenish Complex.

“Camp has went well,” White Chocolate told Irish-Boxing.com. “It’s been a long, hard, and hungry 10 weeks, and all the hard work is done now.”

“I’m just looking forward to firstly getting weighed in and fed, then secondly to get in there and put in a good performance and show that I’m improving from each fight to the next.”

Back in October McCullagh stopped Nicaraguan step-up Edwin Tellez, and faces another strong opponent on Friday in Ghanaian Michael Barnor [14(10)-8(6)-2]. The level of opposition encourages the slick southpaw, and he described how “I’ve always said the better the opposition the better I will be so I’m glad that it’s another step up. There is no point in fighting men who don’t come to win at this stage. ”

“He’s got 14 wins with 10 KOs so he seems dangerous enough. I saw a video of him and he’s a southpaw and looks very awkward – a taste of my own medicine!”

“I’ll have to be careful not to be over eager and stay calm and just go out there and box my fight. If I do that, and box to my best, then I’m confident my hand will be raised at the final bell.”

Friday is the first of two shows in two weeks that heavily feature MTK fighters, with the Boxnation cameras coming to Belfast next week for an even bigger show at the Waterfront Hall. With 23 Irish boxers currently being managed by the outfit, McCullagh admits that there will be friendly and beneficial competition to stand out and feature prominently on subsequent cards.

“I’m eager to impress on my MTK debut on Friday and hopefully I can make them stand up and take notice so they will want me on their bigger shows in the future.”

“They’re a great outfit with a lot of great boxers though so there’s plenty of competition to be on the shows.”

“I am hoping for a big year and this is the start of it on Friday night.”

Also featuring on the first Ginley Promotions card are Sean Turner, Alfredo Meli, Ciaran McVarnock, Stephen Ormond, Ian Tims, and Anto Upton.

Tickets for Dust Up at The Devenish cost £35 (unreserved) and £65 (ringside) and are available from the boxers on the bill or promoter Mark Ginley.

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