Boxing

Irish Elite champion James McGivern signs professional deal with MTK

James McGivern celebrates after beating George Bates in the Irish elite finals last year. McGivern went on to win. Picture Mark Marlow.
Andy Watters

COMMONWEALTH Games bronze medallist James McGivern has signed a professional contract with MTK.

The St George’s ABC southpaw, the reigning Irish Elite super-featherweight champion, hopes to make his pro debut in April and follows hot on the heels of Fearghus Quinn and Paul McCullough who both turned over earlier this year.

A southpaw with a classic boxing style, McGivern will be trained by his dad Jim and Danny Boyle at St George’s and says he wants to be based in and fight in Belfast.

“They got me to the stage I’m at,” said 22-year-old McGivern.

“Without St George’s and my da and Danso (Boyle) this would never have happened: The Commonwealth Games wouldn’t have happened, the Irish seniors wouldn’t have happened…

“They agreed to coach me and I’m happy enough to stay at home. Everyone always goes abroad, like Frampton goes to Manchester, Sean McComb goes to Scotland… But I want to bring people to Belfast, I want to stay in Belfast and fight in Belfast.

“Nothing’s set in stone but I’m hoping around April time. I’m back training every day of the week, twice a day. I have a schedule so I know what I’m doing and when I’m doing it and that always keeps my head screwed on.

“When I was an amateur, I was always fighting in eastern Europe in some place nobody had ever heard of before whereas now I’m going to be home. It used to be me and my mates getting ready for a night out to watch the boxing whereas now it’ll be all my mates coming out to watch me.

“It’s exciting. I’m not expecting to be a millionaire just yet, but it’ll be exciting for me and my family and friends and the fanbase that I have already.”

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Boxing