heavyweight James Gillen has been handed a chance to revive his
kickboxing career - with a title shot!
The security officer had a door of opportunity unlocked this week
when his sparring partner Martin Connolly was forced to pull out
of his Celtic title showdown with Scot Stevie Bonner at the Carrickfergus
Leisure Centre on August 28.
Connolly suffered a knee injury at work, allowing Gillen to step
Gillen, who’s last competitive action was on the Kickmas Box
bill at the Ulster Hall in 2003, said: “I haven’t been
able to fight due to work commitments but I cannot afford to miss
this opportunity. It is just what I need to get going again and
I fully intend to make sure the title stays in Northern Ireland.”
His coach, Prokick supreme Billy Murray is confident the late replacement
will ensure the Celtic heavyweight belt remains in Northern Ireland.
“James Gillen is an able replacement for Martin Connolly.
He was on to a good thing just over a year ago but other commitments
forced him to wind down his fighting ambitions,” said Murray.
“But now he has a second chance and as fate would have it,
it’s a title shot. It was a devastating blow to lose Martin
Connolly but I’m certain the Carrickfergus crowd will get
behind James Gillen.”
Connolly, who will go through a scan to determine the damage to
his right knee after a fall at work, said: “
“If there was one person I’d gladly give my place up
for it’s big James. He’s a gentleman and deserves a
crack at the title. He will be hard to shift and I will be at ringside
to give him 100 per cent backing.”
Tickets for the Kings of the Castle show are available from the
Prokick hotline, 02890 651 074, priced £5 for children, £7.50
for adults and £15 ringside. Family tickets (two adults, two
children) cost £20. Alternatively
purchase your tickets on-line.
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