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Paddy Barnes out to start Xmas celebrations early

Bring it on: Paddy Barnes can't wait to get back into the ring
Bring it on: Paddy Barnes can't wait to get back into the ring
David Kelly

By David Kelly

Paddy Barnes cannot wait to put his career back on track this evening in the Manchester Arena and then enjoy Christmas with his family.

On the back of his world title loss at the hands of WBC world flyweight champion Cristofer Rosales at Windsor Park in the summer, Barnes should have little trouble in handling two-time Commonwealth title challenger Isaac Quaye of Ghana in their six-rounder. Then it will be all about enjoying the season's festivities for Barnes and wife Mari.

"I'm glad this fight is so close to Christmas because I won't feel guilty - I'm going to be fatter than Santa on Christmas Day," quipped Barnes, who for over a decade felt like Scrooge at Christmas due to the pending Irish Amateur Championships.

"It's a rare thing for me at Christmas not having to watch my weight. I spent about 13 years not able to drink and having to keep away from the treats while everybody tucked in because the Irish Championships were in January or early February.

"So, I can't wait to get back home and enjoy Christmas and then look ahead to a good 2019."

As for his fight with Quaye, Barnes is hoping to put into practice what he has been working on in the gym over the past three months.

"I want to go in there and stick to my boxing. Everyone knows that I can fight but I want to show something more than that in this fight," added Barnes, who expects close friend Carl Frampton to defeat world champion Josh Warrington in the main event.

"I like Josh Warrington, I'm a fan of his entertaining style but Carl is a brilliant counter puncher and I think Carl could play with him - even stop him late on."

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