22 August 2008 – by Mark Doyle
Frank Warren has revealed his interest in offering professional deals to Irish Olympic heroes Darren Sutherland and Kenny Egan.
Middleweight Sutherland has already confirmed that he intends to enter the paid ranks following his bronze medal success in Beijing, but light-heavyweight silver medallist Egan is expected to remain amateur.
However, the latter’s head will undoubtedly be turned by Warren’s admission that he would welcome both Irishman into his Sports Network stable.
“I think both of them would make a great addition to the professional ranks,” the promoter told Newstalk 106.
“I’m interested in any world quality, any world class fighter, amateur world class fighter and I think both of them have a lot to offer. So if they are interested, I certainly would be keen to speak to them.”
And Warren feels that the timing is now right for both men to make the switch, believing that if they leave it any later, it will be too late.
“In the case of Darren and Kenny their age is against them. At the next Olympics they will both be 30. So if they are going to turn professional, now is the time to do it,” he declared.
“I think Darren would make a decent professional. Also Kenny would as well. Kenny, I thought he boxed quite well at the Olympics.”
He continued: “But the Olympics are a difficult thing, a little bit false in some ways.
“Michael Carruth, I think he was 30 when he won the gold medal. Unfortunately he just didn’t make it as a pro, as he left it too late.
“The bottom line was that he just could not adapt to the pro ranks. And there are a number of guys who, when you look over the years from Britain’s point of view, I think we have won four gold medals since the war, but only one of those won a world title.
“So that tells you that winning a gold medal does not necessary mean you’ll be a success. The best in the Olympics does not necessary make you the best as a pro.”