Monday 19 March 2018

Kenneth Egan: Billy Walsh told me he was crying all last night... I think he wants to stay

Kenneth Egan and Billy Walsh after another victory
Kenneth Egan and Billy Walsh after another victory Newsdesk Newsdesk

Olympic silver medallist Kenneth Egan believes Billy Walsh would welcome an 11th hour move from the IABA to retain his services.

Walsh is expected to travel to the States in the morning to finalise a deal with USA boxing to take over the management of their women's team but Egan believes nothing is set in stone in that regard.

"I don't whether Billy has signed any contracts with the Americans yet, I believe he is going over to watch the women's championships and then he's coming home," he said.

The hero of Beijing in 2008 said that issues over team selection for major competitions have always existed and he believes that there may be more to the disagreement than is currently in the public domain.

"There is fierce politics going on and for Billy to walk away it must have been more," he added

"I was speaking to him yesterday, I was asking him how he was and he said, 'I'm just drained... I was crying all last night but I have to do what's best for myself' and I respect that.

"Billy wasn't contracted after Rio and they had the power to pat him on the back and say 'take care'.

"What I heard in his voice is that he didn't want to go."

If no deal is done and Walsh travels across the Atlantic, Egan has backed Zaur Anita to continue the high quality coaching in the High Performance Unit but feels he needs someone to handle the organisational aspect of running the team.

"For Zaur to take Billy's job of head coach/director, I don't think Zaur will be able to do that. Zaur thrives on the floor with the boxers," he said.

"If I was there, I would give Zaur the Head Coach's job but they still need a director to organise the things upstairs.

"Billy was doing both, he was down on the floor a lot.

"It won't go downhill. If Zaur stays, they will go on to win medals in Rio. Boxing is not going to fall apart."

Online Editors

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport