BRETT McGinty wants to feel the noise on Friday night.
The St Johnston man (2-0) faces Lukas Ulys (0-2) at the Coventry Skydome and for the first time in his professional career will have the backing of a full house.
His debut win against Jan Ardon was behind closed doors last December. May’s victory over Dwain Grant was in front of a limited crowd at the Skydome.
This week, though, a 50-strong crowd is traveling from St Johnston and Derry to lend their voices in the 3,000-seater arena to support the eight-time Irish champion.
“I’m looking forward to a bit of noise,” McGinty, trained by former world champion Ricky Hatton, told Donegal Daily/Donegal Sport Hub.
“I had a wee taste of it the last time. This week, I’m looking forward to the walk out and hearing the cheers. I want to put on a good performance.”
In the headline bout of Friday’s Mick Hennessy-promoted card, Sam Egginton faces Bilel Jkitou for the WBC silver middleweight title.
McGinty and fellow Sheer Sports Management fighter Stevie McKenna (8-0) are on the undercard with the bouts featuring in coverage on Channel 5.
When McGinty was dancing with Ardon during a rugged six-round debut, the eerie silence was punctured only by the instructions from the corners and the commentary of Richie Woodhall and George Groves.
McGinty said: “It was so weird. My debut felt like a sparring session. I was in the ring and could hear them commenting.
“A good thing was that you could hear the instructions so clearly from the corner, but I remember thinking: ‘That’s George and Richie commentating’.
“I don’t know exactly what they were saying, but I could hear the voices. It was a very weird experience and it’s not something I’d want to experience again.”
McGinty has had to be patient since turning over to the paid ranks with Covid-19 putting a hold on his progression.
Now, though, the former European Schoolboys bronze and Commonwealth Youth Games silver medalist wants to repay the faith shown by his strong army of supporters.
He said: “I always had good support in the amateurs. It’s one thing going up the road to Belfast or Dublin, but for people to be willing to spend money on flights, accommodation and tickets is brilliant.
“Most of the guys on the card have fans who only have fo buy the tickets, but the people supporting me have to go the extra bit. I’m privileged to have people who want to do that.
“The difference in the debut to what I feel now, with my family and friends there – spending their hard-earned money to come and watch me – spurs me on. When the going gets tough, I’ll have that in the back of my mind that people are behind me.”Tags: