Underdog 2 white collar boxing night in Carnbeg
On Saturday night I headed for the Carnbeg Hotel where local boxing club Clan Naofa were hosting their Underdog 2 white collar boxing competition where 28 contestants went toe to toe as a fundraiser for the club.
The fighters had undergone a gruelling ten week training bootcamp and were armed and ready to battle by the time I got there. I first caught up with Kieran Rogers from Avenue Road who was with his partner Clodagh Malone from Dawestown who were there to see her daughter Aisling 'Smash' Carthy who was fighting Rosa 'The Black Panther' Mendy and they couldn't wait to see her in action. They were joined by Mal Hills from Bellurgan who was ready for a major night of action.
Not too long later I then got talking to Tommy McCourt from Lios Dubh with Jolene Metcalfe from Glassdrummond who were ready to see Paddy 'The Mad Man' Maguire who was going in against Shane The Haymaker' Rogers and were sure their mate was well fit for it. They were with Paddy's daughter Ellie Maguire from Hyde Park who wanted to wish her dad all the best.
I did manage a quick word with coach Gerard Ronan from Ashling Park who said the contestants did extremely well during the ten weeks, but it was up to them to see what they could remember when they got in the ring.
After this I headed over for a word with boxer Fergus 'The Wildman' Wilson from Blackrock who was looking forward to exchanging blows with Shane 'The Ferocious' Farrelly and Fergal was having a pre-fight laugh with Eoin McGuinness from Riverside Drive who told me all his money was on Fergal.
Making my way through the crowds I then got talking to brothers Paul and Stephen Finnegan from Rockmarshall who were there to cheer on brothers Padraig 'The Sandman' and Dean 'Meticulous' Mulligan who were up against Giampiero 'Tatanka' Correale and Jacopo 'The Ram' Cecchini respectively and they said they'd be absolutely no respect shown!
Two ladies who certainly weren't going to miss the action were Fiona and Roisin McLoughlin from Bellurgan who were there to cheer on Gemma 'The Dynamic' Dullaghan who was up against Laura 'The Smiling Assassin' Mathews, but would also have a shout or two for Dean and Padhraic too.
Also looking trim, fit and ready for action was Niall 'The Heartbreak Kid' Valentine from Blackrock who was going toe to toe against Mick 'Mayhem' Mulholland and couldn't wait to get into the ring. He was chatting to Philip McGuinness from Blackrock who couldn't wait to see Niall dishing out the punishment.
After this I headed over to a bunch of lads who included Tiernan Lavery from Bay Estate, Ryan King from Manydown Close and Paul McNally from Castletown Road who were there to make sure Jack 'Wacko' Curley from McSwiney Street did them proud against Mickey 'The Dreamcrusher' Clarke.
I then caught up with Conor Nicholson from Glenwood who was with his main squeeze Dearbhla Lennon from Togher along with Shannon Sullivan and Alan Weldon both from Meath who were sure that their friend Carrie 'The Mighty Believer' Sellick was going to finish it early against Saoirse 'Sledgehammer' McDermott, but I'm sure Sledgehammer would have something to say about that!
One young lady who was certainly looking all part of the boxing razzmatazz was Aoife Valentine from Blackrock in her yellow tartan skirt who was busy selling raffle tickets for some major prizes!
Not too long later I then got a word with Michael O'Callaghan from Woodbury Gardens and Shane Smyth from Louth Village who assured me that Mickey 'The Dreamcrusher' Clarke would definitely finish it in the first with a KO.
Talk about pressure, brothers Dean and Padhraic Mulligan who were in action were going to be under the watchful eye of a Scene'n'Heard legend, non-other than Paul 'Prince Naseem' Mulligan from Bellurgan who was with his brother Niall and nephew Josh Condon all from Bellurgan. Great to see 'The Prince' is still ducking and diving!
Finally before I departed as the first bout between Mark 'Quick Hands' O'Hagan and Chris 'Sugar Ray' Leddy got under way I met up with Shauna O'Callaghan, Andrea Farrell and John Foley all from Crossmaglen who were just arriving in and Shauna told me she was there to support her club and couldn't wait to see how everyone got on after their training.