‘We’ll see what the fuss is about’ – Keane McMahon confident he can upset Belgian starlet

Keane McMahon [6(3)-1(0)] has warned Anass Messaoudi [9(7)-0] he won’t have it all his own way this time out.

The Dubliner takes a big risk in his first fight in over two years traveling to Belgium to fight their number 1 welterweight on his home patch on June 19.

Messaoudi is an undefeated prospect many in his homeland have high hopes for. The 27-year-old has competed in the WSB, has graced all the major amateur competitions in a successful career in the vest and hasn’t put a foot wrong as a pro.

It’s certainly not a routine return but is one McMahon feels he can win nonetheless. ‘The Iceman’ is focusing on the reward rather than the risks involved – and having done his Messaoudi homework feels he has the tools to upset the locals come the All Eyes on Brussells card.

“I said from the start of my career that I believe in my abilities. When I had a look at the guy he impressed me but I knew I had the style to beat him and Steve [O’Rourke] had a lot of confidence I’d do a job on him, so when I watched him again I definitely fancied the job,”McMahon told Irish-boxing.com.

“I’ll be going against a home crowd and judges as well, so it makes the task a bit harder but I genuinely feel as though I will beat him.”

The latest addition to the O’Rourke stable feels Messaoudi has had things all his own way up and until this point but promises that will change on June 19.

“Look there is no getting away from the fact he is a very good opponent. He’s a big puncher and has that bit of craft about him. But everybody he’s fought has stood there and taken punishment I certainly won’t be doing that. I’ll be there for 8 rounds firing on all cylinders and we will see what the fuss is about.”

Again it is not the kind of opponent fighters look to trade leather with on the back of a defeat or after a long lay off.

However, McMahon notes his duck egg is already smashed, and like Humpty Dumpty’s men he can’t put it back together again. As result, he goes in without fear of defeat with eyes only for the opportunity it is.

“Firstly I wouldn’t take a fight if I didn’t think I could win. So I’m very confident of victory as always,” he adds before discussing the fight choice.

“To be honest I just wanted to get back in the ring. I would take a handy warm-up fight if I was worried about keeping my 0 but sure that has gone already, so ill take these big opportunities when they come.”

The fight represents McMahon’s first under new coach Steven O’Rourke and he is excited about what he has been learning in Inchicore.

“I have gone back to my boxing big time. Steven has added tools to my arsenal that I never thought I had. He is a top-class trainer and brings the best out of me in the gym. The atmosphere is class too. I get on really well with all the lads. The sparring and training really is brilliant I’ve enjoyed my time at the gym and there’s loads of success to come. This is the beginning of my rebuild.”

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

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 sport for a living for 19 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

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