Macroom boxer fights for Irish title on Rebel soil this Saturday
BY JOHN O’SHEA
MACROOM boxer Noel Murphy is primed for action ahead of his first professional bout in his native Cork this Saturday.
Based out in New York for the past number of years, the 24-year-old will hope to make it a successful homecoming, when he fights for the Irish welterweight title at Neptune Stadium this weekend.
In what is the first professional boxing card in Cork for over a decade, Murphy headlines the July bill and will look to make another statement on his rise up the ranks.
When Murphy last fought on Irish soil in Dublin back in 2017, he brought a big support up from Cork and, in particular, his native Macroom to the National Stadium. With this fight taking place in the Rebel County, a bumper crowd and electric atmosphere is anticipated on the night in Neptune Stadium.
As he looks ahead to his Leeside return, which is scheduled for the Irish title against Dublin’s Jake Hanney, Murphy tells The Southern Star that it is an occasion he is eagerly awaiting.
‘I can’t wait for it to be honest. We packed out Dublin when I fought up there so Cork should be unbelievable. It is for an Irish title so that makes it a little bit more special as well,’ Murphy said.
‘It is massive to me. I always wanted to be an Irish champion in the pro ranks. Bringing it back to Cork then is massive. It sets up big fights in the future because whoever wins the Irish title, they are in the top 15 in Europe, I think.
‘It is a prestigious belt and it would open up doors for me as well.’
Murphy adds: ‘It is going to be a big night for Cork boxing. It is opening a lot of doors. If this show goes well, any Cork boxers coming up they know there is a path there for them as well and the market is there for it. So it is massive and hopefully it will bring a good buzz to Cork.’
Murphy has won 13, lost one and drawn one of his 15 outings so far in the professional ranks. In his most recent outing, Murphy recorded a comfortable points win over Dubliner John Joyce in Boston on the eve of St Patrick’s Day.
He was back home in his native county in preparation for the big fight. Most of Murphy’s career has been spent over Stateside in New York. Among his victories was on the undercard to a world title bout between British James DeGale and Badou Jack.
Murphy feels moving to and being based in the Big Apple has really benefited his career.
‘New York is brilliant. The sparring there is unbelievable, the professional fighting is a lot more common there as opposed to Ireland,’ Murphy explains.
‘The sparring you are getting there is top class. There is an awful lot more world champions. I have sparred the likes of Terence Crawford and Chris Algieri. Crawford is ranked pound for pound one of best in the world at the moment.
‘All these guys are or were world champions. That’s brilliant experience.
‘It is a fierce learning curve and you pick up a lot of tricks from them. You see how they act in there and their composure. It is brilliant to be around a world champion. The levels are different and to be learning from them is brilliant.
‘To know I can hold my own with them, that’s a great confidence boost to me as well.’
Murphy is someone who has put years of hard work into his profession. He is also someone who is keen to get to the top level and he has set his ambitions high.
‘I am hoping to take this Irish title now and push on to maybe a European title. Then maybe try to get myself into the top ten in the world and taking anybody on then, hopefully maybe a title shot. That is where I want to go,’ he explains.
‘I have put a lot of work into it so far and there is no point in stopping now. I have been boxing for 15 years, there is no point in not looking to go the whole way.’
Noel Murphy is a name to keep a firm eye on and he looks like he could be destined for very big things.