Published: November 21, 2004
By David Kelly
21 November 2004
Rumour has it Mike Tyson is heading to Dublin for a 2005 showdown with Clones giant Kevin McBride.
Tyson’s coach Freddie Roach, rated the number one coach in the
world, revealed to Sunday Life that plans are at an advanced stage to
bring the former undisputed World heavyweight champion to
Ireland as part of a European tour.
Tyson was all set to face McBride earlier this year until a dispute
over money allowed Danny Williams to get his chance and shock the world
by stopping the 38-year-old.
Roach insists that Tyson can still work his way back to another
title shot and that a knee injury helped Williams, who challenges World
champion Vitali Klitschko on December 11, to deliver the victory of his
previously indifferent career.
The Los Angeles-based trainer, who also works with Wayne McCullough
and Bernard Dunne, feels it must be a more gradual process for Tyson.
“I want Mike to do a European tour and then get another big title
shot. I’ve spoken to him about fighting in Dublin and he loves the
His promoter Shelly Finkel is also keen and I’ve spoken to Dunne’s manager Brian Peters about putting it on,” revealed Roach.
“As soon as it was mentioned to Mike he was very keen to fight in
Ireland and I’m sure Mike against McBride would draw a very big crowd
“I can see Mike starting there and then having a fight in England
and maybe Germany and France. Four or five fights in quick time that
will really get him ready for a title fight.
“He needs to be active to get the best out of him. When he fought
Danny Williams I thought he showed some of his old best form. He was
quick and throwing plenty of combinations but then he injured his knee
and that stopped him from getting the leverage to get his punches off
and he was left open to Williams’ shots.
“But credit to Danny as well. He fought a great fight that night. He
showed plenty of courage and he deserves his shot at Klitschko.
“That’s a fight that Mike would love to have again. We’d like to even that score and that could be one of the fights for Mike.”
While many view convicted rapist Tyson as a debt-ridden former
champion out of control and with little chance of getting back to the
top, Roach insists that he is now more focused than ever on his career.
“I know the image people have but Mike’s a nice guy, he really is.
When he fought Lennox Lewis (and got knocked out) his training camp was
in Hawaii ? you can’t have that for a World heavyweight title fight.
That’s over now.
“For Williams he sparred eight rounds a day and he was in very good
shape. He’s a really good guy. There’s no problem with Mike.
“He’s a down to earth guy who’s still fighting on to pay off his
debts. I hope that after another, maybe five fights that he then
“He’s still a big draw in boxing and people still want to go and see Mike Tyson.”
That would surely be the case if, as Roach expects, Tyson comes to Dublin.
Meanwhile, boxing promoter Eugene Maloney, who helped staged last
week’s pro-am show at Shorts Recreational Club, is keen to come back to
Belfast and put on a bill at the Ulster Hall.
“The little show went well but I think it can be done even better.
The Irish people love their fighting and there’s no reason why you
couldn’t have regular small, value for money shows there,” said
Maloney, who regularly stages sell-out bills at the York Hall and has
built up a reputation for quality shows.
Source: Sunday Life