Dean – great to meet you firstly down here. For people who don’t know you how would you describe yourself and your career so far?
I’m a mad Irishman!
No I’d describe myself as a globe-trotter. I’ve been over in Australia, won a couple of titles in my first fights as a professional and went on from there. I then went to America and worked with the best trainer in the world Freddie Roach, he managed me, trained me and I sparred with Manny Pacquiao, Amir Khan and Victor Ortiz.
I’ve comeback to the UK as my son Deano was born and I couldn’t do the long distance thing. I missed him too much.
I made my pro debut in Australia – I won Australian Light-Welter title and a couple of minor titles before that. Then I went to America and went 6-0, Freddie Roach seen me & had me spar a couple of his guys then said to me; “We’ll keep you here.”
I had 6 fights out there undefeated, it was a great learning experience – been in and mixed it with the best. I could have got a lot more fights but it’s the luck of the draw. I came back to England, I was 15-0 and I signed with Frank Warren – I learnt the business more and unfortunately had a couple of losses – it was up and down really.
I was in & out of the ring when I signed with Frank – I was fighting once a year. I took a fight at 24 hrs notice and had my first defeat after losing too much weight. My career has never really got going really.
I took a fight in 2012 after two weeks back in the gym against Carson Jones – we all know he gave Kell Brook one of his toughest fights of his career and I got a draw with him. That fight I took at 3 days notice and done that.
So it no doubt made you wonder what you could achieve with a solid training camp and preparation?
Exactly. Everyone saw the fight and the stats proved that I won (against Jones) but that’s boxing. You take the good with the bad. I’ve never had the good unfortunately!
I’m living and learning – I’ve got the boxing bug back and as you’ve seen me this week I’ve been running hills and doing circuits with Peter Sims. It was really hard but I’m determined to get fit and train with this great bunch of lads here.
As a youngster growing up who was your idol?
I used to love Prince Naseem and imitate him. I’d put my hands down, have the tassels on my shorts and give it the biggun. Steve Collins was a warrior and World Champion himself and I used to look up to him growing up.
Today it’s Floyd Mayweather – everyone loves how skillful he is. Of course Pacquiao is someone I admire as I’ve seen his work ethic and how hard he’s driven and how hard he trains. I picked up so much from him.
I’m just looking forward to this year, I’ve got the boxing bug and you’ve got it yourself Paul with your writing and you’re not even training!
It doesn’t matter how you get it – you are just drawn to it.
I was running Christmas day and I have all the experience I just need the regular activity this year.
I haven’t fought for eight months so I need to spar first as the ring time is important. I think a couple of weeks but Peter will tell me.
Dean thanks for your time, best of luck on the comeback trail and I’m looking forward to seeing you in the ring.
Cheers mate – I think that’s the longest interview I’ve ever done! Enjoyed it.