Former double European kickboxing champion, Aaron McCarron, made an explosive return to the ring on Saturday night with a first round stoppage of Athlone’s Tony McCarthy.
Making his debut in the K1 discipline following a seven year absence from the ring, the Bishop Street man had the 450 strong attendance in The Glassworks on their feet with a powerful display.
The personal trainer and former bodybuilder shed approximately 14 kgs inside 12 weeks in order to make the weight for Saturday’s fight.
And he showed no signs of ring rust as he steamrolled his way to a quickfire victory.
His opponent, representing Westside Kickboxing Club, Athlone, set the pace for the fight when coming out all guns blazing in the first round but he simply couldn’t deal with McCarron’s punching power and accuracy.
The referee stopped the contest after a flurry of attacks, culminating with a solid kick to the head from McCarron at the end of the first of three scheduled two minute rounds.
Although delighted with his first taste of K1 action and a facile victory, McCarron was slightly disappointed not to have been presented with a tougher test.
“That was my first fight in seven years and I’m just delighted to be back,” he declared.
“Training was tough but if you love it, then it makes it easier to take.
“I was doing a bit of bodybuilding so it was hard dropping off the weight but with my coach, Paddy Toland, behind me, he motivated me and kept me right.
“I knew he was coming to fight from the start.
“I didn’t want to come in and have a walkover, I wanted to get hit to test myself.”
And he made the switch from kickboxing to the low kicks and knees of K1 with ease.
“There is a big difference in styles. It’s a lot rougher.
“A kickboxing fight can be just as hard at times but you have to fight the fight your way and hope for the best.”
Having made his long awaited return to the ring, McCarron has now set his sights on turning professional and the possibility of challenging for a kickboxing world title over the coming months.
“I’m hoping to turn professional after Christmas but that’s up to Paddy (Toland).
“Maybe I will get a chance to go for a world title in kickboxing like I’ve always wanted to do and then move on with the K1 and go for titles.”
McCarron was the headline act on a top class bill of kickboxing and K1 contests at the Great James’ Street venue.
Impressive wins for PT’s fighters
Among the best of the 20 fights down for decision was ISKA Irish Junior Damien Duddy’s impressive knockout of Nathan Young of Bulldogs, Lurgan.
Duddy ended the contest in the first round with a spectacular roundhouse kick to the chin of his opponent to enhance his reputation in the sport.
Eamonn Dean also impressed in his clash with Athlone’s Diaman Burke as the referee stopped the contest in the second round.
And Jay McVeigh of PT’s Carrigan’s delivered an exciting victory over Athlone’s Andrew Grogan in one of the best contests of the night. McVeigh eventually claiming a deserved points win over the Athlone man.
Results - Ciara McMullen (PT’s Carrigans) v Mary McAuley (PT’s Buncrana) draw; Emma O’Neill (Dragon’s Lair defeated Sarah Steward (PT’s Bishop St); Dan Levell (Bulldogs) defeated Barry Doherty (PT’s Buncrana); Jordan Forde (Corrib K.B. Galway) defeated Frankie Quigley (PT’s Carrigans); Danny Grady (Dragons Lair) defeated Kevin Harkin (PT’s Bishop St); Barry Gallen (PT’s Killygordon) defeated Scott Katman (Bulldogs); Dara Toeman (Bulldogs) defeated Conor Crumley (PT’s Bishop St); Laurence Taggart (PT’s Carrigans) defeated Karl Kelly (PT’s Buncrana); Jerry Deehan (PT’s Bishop’s St) defeated Andrew McLaughlin (PT’s Rathmor); Stephen Whoriskey (PT’s Buncrana) defeated Sienna O’Coin (PT’s Bishop St); Damian Duddy (PT’s Carrigans) defeated Nathan Young (Bulldogs); Darl Whyte (PT’s Carrigans) defeated Ian Moore (Westside, Athlone); Eamonn Dean (PT’s Carrigans) defeated Diaman Burke (Westside); Jay McVeigh (PT’s Carrigans) defeated Andrew Grogan (Westside); Aaron McCarron defeated Tony McCarthy (Westside).