McGuigan Says Bernard Dunne Has A Real Chance Of Beating Cordoba Tonight!

21.03.09 - by James Slater - Former WBA featherweight king Barry "The Clones Cyclone" McGuigan is one of the most popular and respected Irish fighters in history. Becoming world champ back in June of 1985, when he out-pointed great Panamanian Eusebio Pedroza over fifteen rounds in a fine battle, Barry endeared himself to his countrymen. Tonight, 29-year-old Bernard Dunne gets his chance to do the same thing, as he will climb into the ring with Panama's current WBA super-bantamweight ruler Ricardo Cordoba..

Dunne, who recovered from his shock one-round annihilation at the hands of Spain's big-punching Kiko Martinez, is the underdog against the formidable 24-year-old - yet McGuigan feels the fight that will be held at The O2 in Ireland will be won by the man from Dublin.

The former featherweight champ spoke to the Belfast Telegraph about Dunne's big chance.

"It's a very tough fight for Bernard," McGuigan said. "This guy is a very good world champion though I don't think he hits that hard and I think Bernard has a real chance of winning the title. Bernard is going to have to be very clever in this fight because in the past he has been accused of having a leaky defence and we saw that in the Kiko Martinez fight when he was stopped in a round, but I think he has learned from that night.

"He has to be patient in this fight and if he can keep a tight guard and pick his punches well he can win it. He has always had good variety and he's a well balanced fighter so he can give the champion problems. He's very dedicated and he's a great guy outside the ring so it would be great to see him life the WBA belt."

Dunne really will have to put on the performance of his life if he's to beat the 24-year-old southpaw who won the (interim) WBA title back in September of last year, becoming a world champ on his fourth attempt. Not only is Cordoba younger, he also has a massive edge in experience over the 29-year-old.

Dunne has boxed well at British and European level (the Martinez disaster aside), and he has won three in a row since the August 2007 1st round KO loss, but is he really ready for Cordoba? Of course, no-one can blame him for taking this chance, but some feel it has come too early. Cordoba, at 34-1-2(21) may not be a huge puncher, but he is certainly dangerous, also he has never been stopped (his sole loss coming via spilt decision to Thailand's Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym in August of 2005).

McGuigan doesn't think Dunne will be able to stop the champ tomorrow night either.

"If he's going to win the title, he's probably going to have to go the twelve rounds," McGuigan said.

A huge fight for Dunne and for Ireland, round one will be here very soon!

Article posted on 20.03.2009

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