Date Published: 09-Jun-2011
If you met Craughwell’s Alan Donnellan and were asked to guess his chosen sport, boxing would, in all likelihood, not be high on the list. Yes, he is built like the Terminator, but his soft-spoken style, good natured personality and beaming smile are almost a contradiction to the perceptions of his sporting occupation.
Don’t be fooled, though. It’s always the quiet ones. For in essence, Donnellan is fast becoming boxing’s silent assassin.
With three wins from his opening three professional fights, the 23-years-old light middleweight now seeks to continue his unbeaten run when he faces English opponent, Ricky Boulter in front of a home crowd in Leisureland, Salthill on Saturday, June 18.
This will be Donnellan’s fourth professional fight, having won his previous three outings – against English duo Ryan Clarke and Lester Walsh and Bulgarian hardman Zahari Mutafchiev – on points. Another victory would certainly enhance his reputation on the national and international circuit.
The night – entitled ‘The Fighting West’ – brings together some of the very best boxers from the West of Ireland and Midlands, with Mullingar’s JJ ‘Stick’ McDonagh facing Tommy ‘The Tiger’ Tolan in the headline super middleweight event in Salthill.
This will be the first time that an Irish super middleweight title eliminator fight will take place in Galway and with other boxers such as Connemara’s Colm Keane and Galway-based Mayo man Michael ‘The Storm’ Sweeney also in action, it promises to be a cracking night’s entertainment.
For Donnellan, however, his sole focus is on his bout against Southpaw Boulter, a Lincolnshire opponent who comes into this event with nothing to lose. The Englishman has fought 15 times to date, winning just once, drawing three, and losing no less than 10 bouts on a points’ decision. In order words, this guy can take some punishment and still go the distance.
Donnellan will be favoured to secure another professional victory, but he must be wary of an opponent who can throw caution to the wind for this one. The Craughwell boxer cannot be complacent. He agreed that Boulter could be “a very difficult opponent”.
“Ricky is about as tricky and as awkward as you could get. Essentially, he is a fighter. If he is in with top level fighters, he will give them a terribly awkward time of it. He is more than just a stepping stone,” said the Craughwell man.
“What I have to do, though, is focus on being the best Alan Donnellan I can be against a Southpaw and not worry about his record, his origins, his training partners or anything like that. I am just concentrating on being the best possible boxer I can be, and I am hugely looking forward to this fight.”
Another reason for his heightened sense of anticipation is that this will be his first fight in his home county in three years. No wonder, then, that a large contingent from Craughwell and its surrounds is expected to be in the City to support their local hero.
“The support from Galway is unbelievable,” beamed Donnellan. “I can’t even put it into words. It has been fantastic. You can talk about GAA rivalries, but I have had Craughwell, Turloughmore, Athenry, Clarinbridge, Kilcolgan and Galway City people all support me at previous fights. It is absolutely incredible.”
Indeed, like so many, the orthodox boxer beg
an his sporting career as an aspiring hurler. “When I was younger, my cousins William and Charlie (Donnellan) were big into the hurling, so I played a bit of hurling myself. While I enjoyed that, I never really excelled. I never came into my own in that sport.
“I also played rugby and I enjoyed that – I played rather well – but, again, I never came into my own. Every time, though, I went into a boxing gym, I felt like I was something special. I felt like I was something a bit different. I always had very quick reflexes, and, thank God, I was always durable. I have never, ever been put down, never been hurt.”
Donnellan’s love of boxing was nurtured in the early years by Loughrea Boxing Club, before he joined Olympic BC in Galway. When he went to college, he founded his own boxing club at LIT – where he qualified as a quantity surveyor – before joining St. Francis BC in Limerick.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
Appeal for information following Portumna crash
Date Published: 08-May-2013
Gardai are appealing for witnesses following a single vehicle crash at the Portumna bridge this morning.
The road from Nenagh to Loughrea reopened shortly after 11 this morning following the completion of a technical exam.
Four men were travelling in a van when they hit the Portumna bridge around 6:30 this morning.
Gardaí, ambulance and two units of Portumna fire services rushed to the scene, and one of the men was taken to Portiuncula hospital in Ballinasloe.
He is being treated for head injuries, which have been described by Gardaí as serious.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Portumna Garda station on 09-097-42060
President Higgins among GMIT’s first ever honorary fellowships
Date Published: 10-May-2013
GMIT is to honour seven outstanding individuals including President Michael D Higgins with Honorary Fellowships at a special ceremony later this month.
It’s the first time in the 40 year history of the Institute the Governing Body of GMIT has decided to award honorary fellowships.
The GMIT Honorary Fellowships will be conferred at the g Hotel in the city this day two weeks Friday 24 May at 2.30pm in front of 200 invited guests.
Galway commuters hold their breath as LRC intervenes in bus strike
Date Published: 13-May-2013
Galway commuters are holding their breath as there has been a potential breakthrough in the Bus Eireann dispute, as both sides have agreed to talks at the Labour Relations Commission.
The LRC intervened this afternoon, on day two of strike action that has seen 95 per cent of bus services disrupted across the country.
The LRC’s Director of Conciliation Services, Kevin Foley, says the National Bus and Rail Union and the company have agreed to meet for mediated talks at 8 this evening.