Belfast Telegraph

Brian Magee has world title bid in sight

By David Kelly

As one man sat on his stool and another celebrated, both felt fatigue. Roman Aramian was exhausted from the punishment he had consumed and Brian Magee tired dishing it out with an intensity that is now becoming his trademark.

Belfast's European champion cleared his horizon on Saturday night at the National Stadium in Dublin and now the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is in view.

On the back of the 35-year-old's comprehensive defeat of Aramian, who failed to answer the bell for the ninth round, co-manager Pat Magee will start speaking to the World Boxing Association about Magee's bid to win their World super-middleweight belt from Dimitri Sartison.

The WBA is expected to order Sartison to defend against Magee within 90 days and a period for negotiation should not follow and should no agreement be met then purse bids will ensue.

Magee is naturally hoping that the fight comes to Belfast and his management believes it is a realistic proposition with the King's Hall the obvious venue.

While Magee played his part so well on Saturday night in the quest for the ultimate opportunity, never allowing the rugged challenger to threaten from the opening bell, he admitted there was more pressure than many would have imagined.

“In the day before the fight and on the day I was feeling the growing expectation. No matter how hard you try to block it out, you can't help being aware of the significance of the fight. The European title was on the line, the world title shot but also my own expectations of wanting to deliver a good performance,” said Magee, whose high volume of punches was very impressive as he had Aramian reeling on several occasions, including the first round.

“From the start I wanted to get out there and do the business and when I caught him early I just thought ‘I'll get him out of there and have a an early night’ but he was very tough and I had to just calm myself down at the end of the round. I couldn't believe how hard he was because I was catching him and hurting him and he would still be back in my face and I'm thinking ‘do you really want to take more of these shots?'

“Credit to him, he had plenty of courage and he will make a tough night for many fighters but I just felt that my experience of knowing when to raise the pace and my skills were the difference.”

Now he can sit back and let his management team of Pat Magee and John Rooney work out the details of his world title chance — an opportunity that he could hardly have imagined even 12 months ago.

“I've done my bit, now it's over to Pat and John and if they can bring the champion that would just be a dream come true,” added Magee. “I'll just have a break now and get back to normal life — back to the school runs!”

On the supporting bill, Spain's Kiko Martinez out-pointed Armenian Arsen Martirosyan to win the European super-bantamweight title and he may now defend against Limerick's Willie Casey, who had a points victory over American Robert DeLuz in Dublin.

Meanwhile, Katie Taylor opened her AIBA World title defence with a comfortable last-32 win over Neetu Chalal of India in Barbados.

The Bray woman, who is aiming for her third World title in a row, earned an impressive 12-2 verdict over four rounds at the Garfield Sobers Gymnasium in Bridgetown.

Belfast light-welterweight Allana Murphy will be in action today against reigning World champion Gulsum Tatar of Turkey. The clash is a repeat of last month's European Union duel which Tatar won 4-0. In Sunderland, British featherweight champion Martin Lindsay easily outpointed Belarussian Yauheni Kruhlik 59-55 over six rounds.

Belfast Telegraph


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