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McCloskey to brief GAA coaches on boxing clever

By John Campbell

Paul McCloskey has been proving a big hit in the boxing ring recently — and now the Dungiven man is set to conquer a new horizon in another sport.

The current EBU European light welterweight boxing champion will be one of the keynote speakers at the Ulster GAA Council’s Annual Coaching Conference in Cookstown on Saturday and his appearance has already ensured that 400-plus coaches from throughout the country will be there.

McCloskey, who has played gaelic football and hurling for his home town club, will reveal how he successfully made the transition from amateur GAA player to become a star of the ring.

McCloskey who boasts an undefeated record spanning 22 bouts, is looking forward to what he sees as a new challenge.

“Obviously while the GAA is essentially an amateur organisation it is run on a professional basis,” he said.

“While I am obviously totally focused on my boxing career I still take a big interest in the affairs of my local football and hurling teams and I am also a big Derry fan. They have reached the semi-final of the McKenna Cup under their new manager John Brennan and things are certainly beginning to look up.”

The ease with which McCloskey has adapted to the demands of a gruelling professional career will be highlighted at the Coaching Conference by former Derry All-Ireland winner Tony Scullion who will conduct a question and answer session with the European champion.

“I think Paul is a superb example of someone who was very good at football and hurling, but became even better at boxing,” said Scullion.

“Younger players in particular can learn a great deal from his attitude, commitment and overall approach. His appearance at the Conference has triggered phenomenal reaction so far.”

Ulster Council executive officer Ryan Feeney confirms that the Council is now “prepared to think outside the box” in terms of maximising motivational talk opportunities and coaching aids.

“We are always looking at improving the way we do things and we believe that Paul McCloskey will bring an extra dimension to our Conference,” said Feeney.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph