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Aaron McKenna primed for WBC Youth ‘World’ middleweight title fight in Coventry


Aaron McKenna is set for his first title fight next weekend. Photo: @aaronmckenna99

Aaron McKenna is set for his first title fight next weekend. Photo: @aaronmckenna99

Aaron McKenna is set for his first title fight next weekend. Photo: @aaronmckenna99

Monaghan pro boxer Aaron McKenna challenges for his first title in eight days’ time when he contests the WBC Youth ‘World’ middleweight title.

The unbeaten 22-year-old, who was just signed a long-term deal with London-based promoter Mick Hennessy takes on Ghanaian Edem Bika in the Skydome Arena, Coventry on November 13. The fight will be shown on Channel 5.

The world’s current best pound-for-pound fighter Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez is a former WBC Youth champion. The ambitious McKenna wants to take on the famous Mexican star in the future.

McKenna’s older brother Stevie, who is has already signed with Hennessy Sports will also be in action in Coventry. The siblings are trained by their father Fergal.

Having previously been based in Los Angeles, the trio have now returned to their native Smithborough in County Monaghan where they train in a purpose-built gym in their back garden.

Hennessy, who managed Tyson Fury when he first become the undisputed World heavyweight champion in 2015, believes that the Monaghan siblings will become big stars in the sport.

“Both Aaron and Stephen are not just incredible fighters. It is everything around them – their work ethic, their attention to detail and the way they live their lives that makes them special,” he said.

“I am very comfortable saying that we will make Arron into a super star in the sport. His ambition is to fight Canelo Alvarez and if he gets it right over the next two or three years that is definitely a fight I can see happening.

“He has got all the piece in the puzzle to make a top fighter and there are a lot of pieces,” said Hennessy.

Fergal McKenna confirmed that he will continue to train his two sons from their base in Smithborough.

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“We have the gym at the back of our house and it’s like a private training camp. We have the world at our feet at the moment. We just go out the back door and go into the gym and we can prepare really well on our own. The boys are almost the same size, so they spar each other and bring each other on,” he said.

However, prior to major fights he envisaged they would travel to England, United States or continental Europe for training camps.

Aaron has won his 12 fights so far, seven inside the distance. His opponent on Saturday week has a 10-1 record with eight of his wins achieved inside the distance. Stephen has a 9-0 record with all but one of his wins coming inside the distance.

Meanwhile, a row between two provincial boxing councils and the IABA’s Central Council has resulted in the Leinster Council cancelling a number of underage championships.

The Leinster Council withdrew their support from the officer board of the IABA some time ago and it now appears they are no longer officially affiliated to the parent body.

According to a statement from the Leinster Council they have been unable to get clarification as to why exactly their affiliation appears not to have been processed.

Due to the continuing uncertainty which has a knock-out impact on issues such as insurance cover for fighters the championships have been cancelled.

“We understand that this is going to be a great source of disappointment for everyone. All we can say is that it was from lack of effort on our part,” said the statement.

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