11th Dec, 2016

Sweeney prepared to take on "good friend" Evans for Middleweight Title in Coventry

Shaun Reynolds 15th Jan, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

IRISH bare-knuckle fighter Jimmy Sweeney has told The Observer he’s prepared and ready to tackle his “good friend” Christian Evans on Saturday for the BKB World Middleweight Title.

Hailing from the North-West county town of Sligo, the 31-year-old has been fighting since the age of seven – though only made a comeback to the sport six months ago after temporarily packing in BKB for several years.

The Celtic Warrior, who has several Irish Boxing titles to his name, isn’t going to let his age deter his chances of defeating Evans on Saturday night after admitting that training has gone as planned.

After making the switch from gloved boxing to bare knuckle fighting, Sweeney told Observer reporter Shaun Reynolds that a different mentality is required when entering the ring with no gloves.

“You have to feel confident, there’s no point in thinking that this or that might happen because I’ll be defeated before I even enter the ring,” said Sweeney.

“Anything can happen in BKB and you have to have full concentration at all times.”

Sweeney will face his good friend Christian Evans in the final and the irishman made it clear that no words need to be exchanged in the build up to the fight.

Sweeney added: “Christian comes from a fantastic family and is a well educated boxer.

“This fight doesn’t need any hype, everyone in the sport has been talking about it for a long time and it’s great that it’s finally happening.

“Regardless of the result, me and Christian will go for a pint together after and celebrate – though I won’t be buying the round if he beats me!”

Like followers and promoters of the event, Sweeney had nothing but praise for bare knuckle fighting and said Saturday’s event will be a tribute to those who have worked hard to bring to sport to where it is now.

The 31-year-old said: “These shows are well put together and everyone behaves accordingly – it’s a credit to those involved.

“I’d like to see the sport go mainstream in the future and Saturday’s event will be a big step in the right direction.

“Over 1,400 people will be there including sporting legends Frank Bruno MBE and Coventry City footballer Joe Cole, I can’t wait.”