An Armagh boxer, who was expecting to make his professional debut in Belfast this weekend, has been left “heartbroken” after being stripped of the opportunity at the eleventh hour.
Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Sean Duffy was set to make his professional bow on the undercard of the Conrad Cummins–Luke Keeler rematch at theUlster Hall in Belfast on Friday night.
However, red tape and an email from the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBoC) has put Duffy’s professional career on the back-burner.
The 27-year-old’s licence has not gone through on time, as confirmed by the BBBoC on Monday – four days before the fight.
Duffy, who underwent an arduous 12-week training camp in preparation for his big night, said he was stunned when he heard the news.
“I genuinely couldn’t believe it when I heard,” Duffy told Armagh I.
“Twelve weeks of hard work, much of which was spent away from my business and family, have been for nothing.
“All I got from the Board was that my licence had not gone through – that I needed to add my middle name to the application as there was already a Sean Duffy registered,” explained the former Keady amateur.
Adding: “I literally found out on Monday and despite my best efforts to fix the problem; they told me it would never be done in time for Friday night.
“I am absolutely devastated. A whole training camp and I’ve sold almost £5,000 worth of tickets for the fight – spent £2,000 on that camp and to be told this is just heartbreaking.
“It’s very hard to get my head around as this was my perfect opportunity to show my skills in front of home fans on what would have been a great night for everyone.
“I’m sure I will face many objects in professional boxing – that’s the nature of the game – but to hit a road bump at this stage of my career is a hard one to stomach.”
The Armagh man has apologised to all those who have purchased tickets and has asked those who no longer wish to attend to get in touch with him as soon as possible.