India’s middleweight boxing sensation, Vijender Singh (2-0) defeated an unbeaten Dean Gillen (2-1) on Saturday 7th November at the National Stadium in Dublin, live on BoxNation TV.
The middleweight match was billed as the ‘Battle of Badges’ with Singh, 30-years-old, a Deputy Superintendent of Police in his native Haryana and Gillen, 33-years-old, a long-serving member of the Nottingham Fire and Rescue Service.
Gillen began by taking the fight to the former Olympian using his stiff jab to his advantage. However, on the two-minute mark, a swift overhand right from the Bihwani boxer knocked the Nottingham man to the canvas.
The 33-year-old immediately returned to his feet but there was another knockdown 30 seconds later, bizarrely this time it wasn’t Gillen or Singh but the referee, David John Irving tripping on the foot of Singh!
Under duress, ‘Deano’, known as the ‘Fighting Fireman’, rolled and moved continually as he was backed up by the Indian megastar trained by Lee Beard in his Manchester gym.
With only 20 seconds remaining in the opening round, another big right hand visibly hurt Gillen and a following flurry of punches caused another knockdown, this time the 33-year-old firefighter couldn’t beat the referee’s count.
The 30-year-old signed to Frank Warren impressed as he doubled his win tally and took the perfect record away from his Carl Greaves managed counterpart.
Post-fight Gillen said, “I had a very small chance of winning and I did land a few decent jabs on him.
“My first knockdown was a slip, he just helped me on my way, it was really slippery in there. The left hook to the ribs was the finisher. It wasn’t even a big shot, it was just the accuracy. If I could have got up then I would have.
“He did hit hard but I had a clear head and was just trying to roll and slip. When I walked back to the dressing room, I was fine.”
The Beijing 2008 bronze medallist, also the owner of three Commonwealth Games medals, displayed a good variety of punches and power in his second pro fight, clearly adapting to the pro game remarkably quickly and seamlessly after such a lengthy and highly-decorated amateur career.
“I’ve had less fights than he’s had competitions!” Deano continued to say. “It takes a lot to get in there, he’s fast and he’s got that pedigree.
“He’s a skilful, silky boxer and I’d like him to do well because it’ll be good for India. He’s a nice guy and I really like him.”
A national treasure back in India, an estimated audience of 15-20 million viewers tuned in to watch the fight live.
After experiencing his first fight away from home, the Firefighter from Arnold plans to continue life as the travelling opponent, he said, “It was good experience for me. Not having the support of the crowd and the chants there like I normally have affected me a little bit, it’s something I’ve got to learn from.
“I’ll have a couple of months off and Christmas with the family, but I’ll be back out in January.”
Promoted by Queensberry Promotions in association with MGM Promotions, headliner Jamie Cox (20-0) defeated 22-year-old Ferenc Albert (20-8) in the first round in a maiden title defence of his newly-attained WBO European super-middleweight strap.
Irish hero Jamie ‘The Mexican’ Conlan (15-0) successfully defended his WBO Intercontinental super-flyweight title by stopping opponent Adrian Dimas Garzon (10-19) in the fourth round.
Popular Irish fighter Jamie ‘The Nuisance’ Kavanagh (19-1-1), 25-years-old, halted his opponent, Oszkar Fiko (14-13) in the seventh round of their scheduled eight-round light-welterweight contest.
The ‘Connemara Kid’ Peter McDonagh (25-28-1) became a three-weight Irish champion at 37-years-old, winning the Irish welterweight title on points over Dean Byrne (17-6-2).
35-year-old cruiserweight, Ian Tims (11-3) triumphed over Michael Sweeney (12-3-1), 32-years-old, by the narrowest of margins after suffering a knockdown in the fourth round.
The pair have history, ‘Timsey’ secured the Irish cruiserweight title with another narrow points victory over ‘The Storm’ at the City West Hotel in Dublin back in March 2011.
MGM’s protégé, Declan Geraghty (10-1) reached double figures on his impressive record beating Reynaldo Cajina (14-28-5) in a shutout points victory.
Unbeaten talents David Maguire (5-0), Sean Turner (7-0), and Isaac Macleod (5-0) enjoyed stoppage victories, while Ciaran McVarnock (5-0-1) increased his winning record with a points victor