Photograph: Russell Pritchard
Phil Sutcliffe Jnr will be fighting for the European title in 10 fights’ time if new manager Pat Magee’s career plan comes to fruition. Pat has plenty of experience in the boxing game after managing Brian Magee and Kiko Martinez in recent years. Now he sees Sutcliffe as the man with the right credentials to push Dublin boxing back on to the map.
“Phil has always been a big puncher, he was an elite amateur boxer and an Irish international. His father was an Olympian so he has the pedigree to go all the way,” said Magee.
“He’s already won five fights with five knockouts. OK it was against poor enough opposition but we will gradually step him up and I would say that within another 10 fights he will be fighting for a European title. That 10 fights could be inside two years, or 18 months or less but let’s see what progress he makes. Anybody they’ve put in front of him up until now he’s knocked them out so who knows?”
Phil will continue to train with his father in Crumlin boxing club with Panamanian Bernardo Checa adding some expert input from his Belfast base. As Magee explained, Checa has mixed in world class so if Sutcliffe is to develop into a world class boxer then he needs a team with a strong reputation and proven results.
“He’s had treatment on his right hand so at the moment he’s waiting for clearance from the specialist. We expect that clearance to come within the next couple of weeks so his first fight will probably be the end of May or into June. We’re waiting for the specialist’s approval but once that happens we will start making arrangements for his next fight,” added Pat.
Magee confirmed that, alongside his business partner John Rooney, he will be running shows in Dublin to facilitate Sutcliffe’s development. One fighter who will not be appearing on those show is Brian Magee who has been busy running his thriving new gym. Rumours of a possible fight with James DeGale seem wide of the mark.
“At the moment Brian is concentrating on his new gym and there’s nothing on the horizon for him at the moment,” confirmed Pat Magee.