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Thursday 21 September 2017

Telly tribute to McGuigan epic

THE 25th anniversary of Barry McGuigan's conquest of Eusebio Pedroza to capture the WBA featherweight title at London's Loftus Road will be marked by a TV documentary on Setanta Ireland on June 8 (10 pm).

"It's hard to believe it was so long ago, although it's still fresh in my mind," said the former Clones Cyclone at the opening of the Fighting Irishmen exhibition at Croke Park.

"It was a wonderful occasion, of course, and it helped to raise spirits at the height of the Northern Ireland troubles."

Welshman Andrew Gallimore, the documentary's director, said he was at university in Cardiff at the time of the fight and he watched it on TV from the students' bar.

"It didn't matter that I had no Irish background," he recalled, "it was just a phenomenal event that was watched by 20 million people in the UK. I doubt you'll see anything like that again."

One of the exciting aspects of Gallimore's one-hour documentary is that he managed to track down Pedroza, who was forced to surrender his world title to McGuigan that unforgettable night in 1985.

If it's anywhere near as good as Gallimore's previous documentaries on Mike McTigue, then TV viewers are in for a real treat.

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