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Leah McCourt pledges to return even stronger after shoulder surgery



On sidelines: Leah McCourt has had shoulder issues

On sidelines: Leah McCourt has had shoulder issues

�INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

On sidelines: Leah McCourt has had shoulder issues

Leah McCourt has vowed to come out fighting after suffering a terrible injury blow.

The Northern Ireland mixed martial artist has undergone surgery on two places in her right shoulder.

The 28-year-old Saintfield ace updated fans on her Instagram account after receiving the distressing news ahead of a return to the cage "in July or August".

McCourt said: "Surgery in two places in my shoulder. Just out of recovery.

"What's one more setback on the path to achieving greatness? Adversity has only ever pushed me up 10 levels. I know how hard the next few months will be but a big setback to me has always meant bigger comeback.

"This time will be a small sacrifice so I can fulfil my purpose. Thank you God for a successful surgery."

In February, she became the first woman to headline a Bellator Europe event in Dublin.

After her historic win over Judith Ruis, McCourt was set to face Janay Harding at Wembley in May but that was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

McCourt was crowned IMMAF amateur world champion in Las Vegas in 2016 and has won four of her five professional fights.

She recently said: "I tore my rotator cuff before my first Bellator fight, and then I did three camps on it. I've been trying to train through it, but I can't even sleep with the pain, so I need it fixed."

The Covid-19 lockdown has been particularly hard on professional athletes.

McCourt commented earlier this year: "I think it's going to be a threat for a long time, you're always going to have to be wary of it but you can't live in fear.

"I'm not going to limit my opportunities and goals. We're obviously going to be very careful and take every measure to make it as safe as possible, but I'm not going to let it hold my career back."

Belfast Telegraph