PIERCE O’LEARY is appealing to fellow Dubliner Conor McGregor to help him secure a dream homecoming bout.
The Notorious MMA superstar sponsored Irish legend Katie Taylor’s Three Arena fight against Chantelle Cameron last May and his new stout brand has backed the Saturday night Joe Joyce vs Zhilei Zhang rematch at Wembley Arena.
Super-lightweight 23-year-old O’Leary is on the London undercard this weekend but a fight at the iconic arena, just a few steps from his family home, is what he keeps dreaming of and he hopes McGregor can assist with.
“Let’s do Paddy’s Day, March 17, that weekend, let’s give everyone a bit of excitement for that weekend.” he grinned.
“The Three Arena is 200 yards from my house, I used to do laps around it as a kid to get fit and cut weight.
“Katie Taylor has got boxing back in there now, her fans packed it out from 5:30pm and that gives me hope I can get there soon.
“I am reaching out to Conor and the Forged Stout company to sponsor a show there for us.
“Conor is an honourable man and when I have a bad day I watch loads of old Conor McGregor fights and footage, it helps me when I am alone in training camps over here in London away from my family.
“A lot of my girlfriend’s family, cousins and uncles, are close friends with Conor so it would be great to work together on something back in Dublin.”
O’Leary was a decorated amateur and could very comfortably still be living at home with his partner and three-year-old daughter while he adds to his undefeated early record.
But he has dragged himself away to set up a tough solitary existence in a lonely flat close to trainer Al Smith’s excellent i-box gym in Bromley.
Zoom calls home can be torturous for the dedicated daddy but he believes he is toughening himself up now for the challenges to come.
“I think I am building the hardship,” he said.
“I want to have a different mentality to everybody else, when the going gets tough I still want to be hanging in there.
“Everytime I leave my family it feels like I am being stabbed with a sword and as it’s pulled out I am deflated.
“Every moment is sink-or-swim for me, Al has to throw me out of the gym every day and tell me to stop training.
“But this is my work ethic, I am not going to leave my family – who depend on me – to come over here and mess about.
“I am regimented, I am away from all distractions, I am lucky to have great grandparents on both sides back home helping with my daughter.”
Conor McGregor has sponsored a few boxing events recently and could add to that with Pierce O’Leary[/caption]
O’Leary’s dashing good looks, designer spectacles and superpower have his manager Francis Warren plotting a Superman-style ring walk soon, complete with a flowing cape.
But the down-to-earth fighter feels like unnecessary attention is his kryptonite and hopes to laugh off the gimmick.
“I am telling you we are not doing it,” he laughed.
“It keeps getting mentioned but it’s not my character. I don’t mind keeping my glasses on for the weigh-in scales but that’s all I need.
“If it really works for the media, then maybe but I don’t like messing around, these fights are where I earn my dough, how I feed my family, so there is no messing around for me.”
September 22, 2023 at 03:22PM
from The Sun