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Sinky keen to fast track career


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Ed McGinley


Having been in the professional fight game since 1995 Neil Sinclair knows all there is to know about the cut-throat boxing business.


The Monkstown man, who thrilled the Belfast public in the late nineties and around the turn of the millennium during a career which included a world welterweight title shot, has been enjoying somewhat of a renaissance this year since landing the vacant Irish light-middleweight title in May.


As he prepares for his next outing at the Odyssey Arena on Friday night against Hungarian Janos Petrovics ‘Sinky’ appreciates that time is not on his side.


Reinvigorated career


The John Breen coached glove man is keen to fast track his reinvigorated career and still harbours ambitions of once again challenging the very best in Europe and beyond.


“I have to aim big. I have to take a short route as well, I can’t really be fighting too many of these fights,” said a hungry Sinclair.


“I still think I have the weapons and that I have more to offer. I’ll see what I’ve got but obviously I want to be involved in big fights. It’s not until you fight the top guys until you know what level you’re at.


The best


“I’ve fought the best before, I’ve shared the ring with those guys so I know what it takes to beat them.


“If I don’t it’s not for the want of trying. I owe it to myself, to John Breen and the people who have supported me to give it my all and see where that takes me.”


If Sinclair dispatches Petrovics as competently as he bypassed Henry Coyle six months ago then his next port of call could be a match up with European light-middleweight champion Ryan Rhodes, who like ‘Sinky’ is on the books of Frank Warren.


Although Rhodes remains an attractive future proposition, Sinclair stressed the importance of taking care of business this Friday.


“I saw him (Petrovics) up close because I was in the corner a couple of years ago when Eamonn Magee fought him,” added the Lonsdale Belt winner.


“He also fought in the Ulster Hall there (Ryan Rhodes knocked out Petrovics in the seventh round in April) when Martin Lindsay was fighting so I know him. He’s resilient and he’s tough. As long as I don’t get carried away and just box and jab I should be okay.”


Going by his preparations, which have included over 120 rounds of top class sparring, Sinclair is on course for a 33rd career victory.


European title challenger Paul McCloskey, Joe Rea and Stephen Haughian have all put the former British champion through his paces. Sinclair is in tremendous shape and more importantly he’s enjoying his boxing.


Great shape


“I’ve been training long and hard since the Coyle fight because I wanted to capitalise on it. I was a bit worried that I would go over the top when the fight was rescheduled but it hasn’t happened. I’m in great shape,” stressed the 1994 Commonwealth Games champion.


“The gym is going so well. We are all working off each other and we should have a European champion (Paul McCloskey) after Friday night. Then you have boys like myself who are on the verge of a title shot. I’m just going from strength to strength.”



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