New York, New York... Tyrone fighter Feargal McCrory making waves after victory at Madison Square Garden

‘Fearless’ stops Mexican Carlson to win WBA Inter-Continental title at Madison Square Garden

Feargal McCrory won the WBA Inter-Continental title and moved to 17-0 at Madison Square Garden Theatre
Feargal McCrory won the WBA Inter-Continental title and moved to 17-0 at Madison Square Garden Theatre

ST Patrick’s weekend with the tricolours flying in Madison Square Garden, a stoppage win over a typically tough Mexican and the WBA inter-continental title belt around his waist…

Things couldn’t have gone much better for Coalisland super-featherweight Feargal Quinn who is rocketing up the rankings and becoming a very popular draw with fight fans in New York.

‘Fearless’ caught up with experienced Carlos Carlson in the third round at ‘The Garden’ and now hopes to return to the boxing Mecca, possibly as the headline act, in July.

“There are no easy fights with any Mexican so it couldn’t have gone much better,” said McCrory.

“I know it’s a cliché in boxing but I really did have the best (training) camp of my life. There were things that needed to be addressed and fixed from my last fight and we addressed and fixed them all and the results showed in the fight.

“We were delighted with the whole performance from the training camp to fight night – it was all really good.”

McCrory was inactive for three years before he returned to the ring in 2022. Saturday night’s WBA inter-continental belt was his first title since he won the Irish lightweight strap back in 2019. And he intends to keep pushing for more…

“The world ranking that comes with the WBA title is very important and now I’m looking up, I want somebody that’s ranked higher than me with the WBA next,” he said.

“I want to keep going this WBA route and keep pushing and I’ll see where I end up.”

He wants to base himself in New York for future fights and the Irish community in the ‘Big Apple’ are rallying behind the Tyrone man who has been amazed by the support he is receiving.

“How popular I’ve become, the ticket sales we’re generating and the support I’m getting is hard to believe,” he explained.

“You have to experience it to understand it because it’s been crazy, I feel so lucky and I’m so proud of the support I’m getting from the Irish community.”

A talented Gaelic Footballer who represented his county at underage level, McCrory lives at home and trains for fights in the USA with Colin Morgan these days. He says that the experienced New York coach is getting the best out of him.

“That was my fourth fight with Colin and I’m more than happy with him,” he said.

“He’s amazing at what he does and he’s a great teacher of boxing. I feel like I’m improving ever single camp with him and learning so many things.”

The first 11 fights of McCrory’s career were on home soil and he doesn’t rule out fighting on this side of the Atlantic again in the future. But for now his focus is on America and the next fight can’t come quickly enough for him.

“I’ve worked so hard out here to get to this point and now I think we have to strike while the iron’s hot and keep the momentum going,” he said.

“160 people flew from Ireland and England to watch me last weekend and the way the Irish community in New York are coming out to support me, a man from Coalisland, it’s mad! They’ve taken me in and it has been great.”

Colm Murphy is in line for a rematch with Liam Gayner for the Irish featherweight title. Picture: Mark Mead
Colm Murphy progressed to 11-0 with his victory in Galway

COLM Murphy out-pointed experienced Tampela Maharusi in Galway on Saturday night to move to 11-0 and within striking distance of a Commonwealth ‘silver’ title shot.

All-action Murphy took the win 79-73 over eight rounds against the aggressive African on a show that included victories for Thomas O’Toole and Luke Keeler, who stopped Godfrey Paulo Kamata in the sixth round.

Meanwhile, up the road in Castlebar, county Mayo on St Patrick’s night, Dillian Whyte made a winning return to the ring with a stoppage victory against Christian Hammer.

Experienced Hammer didn’t come out for the fourth meaning former WBC interim heavyweight champion Whyte claimed his first win since clearing his name following a failed drug test.

Whyte, who hadn’t fought since his victory over Jermaine Franklin at Wembley in November 2022, had been lined up to face Anthony Joshua last August but the fight never happened after he tested positive for a banned substance.

The Englishman was cleared to resume his career after it was accepted he had consumed a contaminated supplement.

On the undercard, Mayo native Ray Moylette signed off with victory against Reuquen Cona Facundo Arce and Dublin heavyweight Thomas Carty beat Pavel Sour.

However, there was disappointment for Cork middleweight Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan who lost to Sofiane Khati.

South Armagh native Fearghus Quinn also won on Saturday night
Fearghus Quinn has had to pull out of the March 30 bill at The Ulster Hall

MIDDLEWEIGHT Fearghus Quinn has been forced to withdraw from the March 30 bill at the Ulster Hall with a hand injury.

Quinn, from Belleek in South Armagh, was due to mix it with Glasgow’s Aston Brown for the BBBofC Celtic title on the Kurt Walker-headlined bill, but a broken bone means he won’t see action until the summer.

“It went again on me so unfortunately I’ve had to postpone it,” said Quinn.

“It’s a nightmare, but hopefully I’ll get the hand sorted and maybe get the fight rescheduled because it would have been a good one and the winner would have got a good boost to their career.

“So it’s a shame about the injury but hopefully I’ll not be out too long.”

Winning the Celtic title will put Quinn in contention for a shot at the British title which is currently held by Nathan Heaney who kept the belt after a draw against Brad Pauls in Birmingham last Saturday night.

“I’ll say it will be the summer before I can get back out,” said Quinn.

“I’ll be in the cast for another few weeks. I rushed it back the last time and now it has gone again on me so I want to do a proper job on it.”