| 10°C Belfast

Ambitious McCrory hoping he can thrive in surreal atmosphere ahead of Ellison clash



Padraig McCrory faces Mickey Ellison

Padraig McCrory faces Mickey Ellison

Padraig McCrory faces Mickey Ellison

Sitting in the Holiday Express in Rotherham unable to leave his room, it is little wonder Padraig McCrory feels post-lockdown boxing is a surreal experience.

The unbeaten Belfast man takes a step up in class in his eight rounder with Blackburn's Mickey Ellison behind closed doors in a studio in Wakefield, seven days on from gym-mate Lewis Crocker lifting the WBO European belt in the same venue.

The hard-hitting super-middleweight is eyeing his own title shot before the end of the year and hopes victory over Ellison will lead to such an opportunity.

"I'm just waiting for the result of my Covid test before I can leave the room and go for some light training," says McCrory as he looks ahead to tomorrow night's important bout.

"The whole experience is strange but it is something that you just have to get your head around. I'm someone who always sells a load of tickets so not having my fans there will be odd but I've spoken to Lewis Crocker about it and he just said once you get hit the face, you don't worry about anything else!

"The thing is, we're all in the same boat. It has affected some fighters more than others but I just feel that I'll be so focused on what I have to do that it won't be an issue. I've been in camp now for 12 weeks, just drilling and drilling with my coach, Dee Walsh, the game-plan for this one. Ellison is coming off a couple of good wins, he has mixed in decent company but I just feel that all-round I'm the better boxer - and my amateur schooling should make a difference."

McCrory believes he has progressed well along the professional learning curve and feels the time is right for him to move up for a title shot after dealing with the threat of Ellison.

"I can't look past Ellison but, yes, I feel that beating him will lead to a title shot. It has already been talked about and I'm confident that my manager, Jamie Conlan, has a good plan for me," added McCrory.

"I feel I've been developing with every fight and, even though the last I guy I fought was a journeyman, the way I went about my work really pleased me. This is a move up in class and I'm excited about what I can do.

"People know I carry power but I've always had decent skill as well and that is something that I've been working on in the gym over the past few weeks with Dee and I want to show that in this fight. Hopefully I can do a good job and then we'll see what can happen next."

Belfast Telegraph