herald

Wednesday 28 September 2016

Hyland: 'I'll start warr'

Pajo the Punisher wants to tee up title shot Josh covets

Dubliner Patrick Hyland will be taking on Josh Warrington on July 30 (Live on Sky Sports 1) in front of his famous hometown support in Leeds. Photo: Sportsfile
Dubliner Patrick Hyland will be taking on Josh Warrington on July 30 (Live on Sky Sports 1) in front of his famous hometown support in Leeds. Photo: Sportsfile

They were giggling like truant schoolboys.

It wasn't the sort of thing you expect to see when boxers square off for photographers ahead of an important fight.

But while Josh Warrington and Patrick Hyland Jr might enjoy a laugh, they're both serious warriors who know their clash in Leeds on July 30 is a crucial crunch fight for each of them.

Warrington (25) has been on a roll. Since winning the English featherweight title in 2012, he's added, and successfully defended, the Commonwealth title, the EBU European title and the WBC International featherweight title.

Unbeaten in 23 fights, he's homing in on Lee Selby's IBF World title.

Selby insists Warrington is dodging him, preferring to meet Patrick Hyland Jr this month.

Comments from the Warrington camp suggest they're already looking past the Dubliner and focusing on a world title fight in November.

But Pajo aims to spoil the party.

Thirty-two year old Hyland (31-2, 15 KOs) is coming off a disastrous second round defeat in April, when he was down three times in the round, in a world title bid against Gary Russell Jr. A win in Leeds would put the Dubliner back in the frame.

It's an interesting match, with both boxers respecting the other's achievements.

While Warrington has had more recent pressure bouts than Hyland, he's been winning on points. But, with just four KOs on his CV, he doesn't appear, unlike Hyland, to have punching power.

But, no doubt having watched Russell demolish Hyland, and putting him on the canvas for the first time in his career, Warrington sees this fight as his chance to prove that he can deliver on excitement.

"Patrick doesn't take a step backwards," he says. "I'll be able to show I can really dig."

While Warrington's camp feel confident of their man's chances, Hyland's guts and power will pose a threat.

"I like how Josh fights," Hyland said. "I've wanted to get in there with him to test him and try to take that future World title shot that he's looking at for myself. We'll give the fans a real war."

Warrington wants a war.

And he'll have partisan home crowd support. But Hyland, who's had nine fights in the US since 2012, is unfazed.

"I've seen a lot of Josh's fights and the noise is deafening," he says. "I can't wait to be part of it."

Promoted articles

Entertainment News