Wednesday 13 December 2017

O'Sullivan camp predict knock-out

Matthew Macklin is headlining at the National Stadium on August 30 but the bout that has Irish fight fans talking is the middleweight grudge match between Cork's Gary "Spike" O'Sullivan and Dublin's Anthony Fitzgerald (16-6, 4KOs).

O'Sullivan (17-1, 10 KOs) says he intends silencing his Dublin rival.

"He's been doing a lot of talking," he says. "It's time I set the record straight. I don't need to mouth off. I just let my fists do the talking. I'm confident I'll beat him."

Just returned from sparring in the UK with Billy Joe Saunders, O'Sullivan is due for some tough work at the Celtic Warrior Gym with former WBO champion Frank Buglioni.

"Spike will knock Fitzey out," predicts coach Paschal Collins. "Simple as that."

Patrick Hyland's comeback win in New York on Wednesday was another important milestone for Irish boxing.

The Dubliner hadn't been in competitive action since losing to Javier Fortuna in Las Vegas in December 2012.

Having been based in the States with Team Snooki Boxing, Hyland came home and took care of business. "I proved against Fortuna that I belong at world level," he said. "I left the ring knowing what I had to do to become a world champion."

Working with Brian Peters, he signed a new promotions deal with Lou DiBella in New York and prepared to meet Puerto Rica's Noel Echevarria, a southpaw like Fortuna.

On Wednesday, Hyland controlled the fight and forced a stoppage early in the fourth bringing his record to 28-1, 13 KOs.

"He's a legitimate contender in the featherweight division," says DiBella. Hyand says, "I'd like a title shot in the new year."

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