sundaylife

| 17°C Belfast

Conlan set for St Patrick's Day title shot at Madison Square Garden if he can win two more fights

 

Close

Michael Conlan has won all 13 of his professional bouts.

Michael Conlan has won all 13 of his professional bouts.

Michael Conlan has won all 13 of his professional bouts.

Michael Conlan is being lined up for a world title shot at Madison Square Garden on St Patrick's night in 2021 - as long as he comes through two bouts before the end of the year.

Conlan, managed by brother Jamie, is going to be part of an August blitz of boxing for Northern Ireland's top fighters as they return to action behind closed doors. Conlan, Carl Frampton, Tyrone McKenna and Sean McComb are all being lined up for big fights next month in a series of bills to be screened on ESPN+ and in the UK on either Sky or BT Sport.

It had been hoped that Belfast would be part of those plans but that is now on ice and it now seems more likely that the first local bill will happen in October or November.

Unbeaten featherweight prospect Conlan is expected to be out in four weeks' time in a double-header with Frampton in England before heading to the States for a fight that would then pave the way to a world title opportunity in New York.

While there has been some talk of Conlan possibly having the chance of a world title shot before Christmas on the undercard of the big clash between world lightweight champions Vasyl Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez, brother Jamie says St Patrick's night is now the plan.

"I have to put my big brother/manager hat on and say that two more fights is looking the ideal way to go for Michael. I know he'd fight for a world title right now but the plan is two more fights and then go for the world title on St Patrick's night at MSG," said Jamie.

"We're in the middle of a bit of a chess game at the moment, just looking to see the right moves to make to take Michael to a world title opportunity - to see what door will open for him at the right time.

"He has been training hard with Adam Booth - they spent 10 days in Belfast and now he is in London, and I know that Adam is very happy with his level of fitness. He has been very disciplined and now it's a case of getting back out and moving forward.

"He has the option of fighting on the undercard of Lomachenko against Lopez but also there is the option of being part of the undercard to the heavyweight title fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder on December 19 in Las Vegas."

While Jamie has been piecing together the route to a world title shot for Michael, he has also been busy dealing with the various headaches of putting together three or four shows for his other fighters - including the Golden Contract light-welterweight Final between Tyrone McKenna and Ohara Davies.

While Sky Sports have four Eddie Hearn bills lined up next month, they are also keen to see McKenna against Davies as soon as possible.

Unbeaten Belfast welterweight prospect Lewis Crocker faces Louis Greene on August 25, while rising star McComb meets Welshman Craig Evans in his first fight at lightweight on August 11. Jamie added: "It's going to be a very busy time and for Lewis and Sean it will be a great opportunity to shine in front of a big TV audience."

Padraig McCrory meets Mickey Ellison on September 1, while James McGivern makes his debut on the Crocker show.

Belfast Telegraph