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Barrow boxer turns pro with Frank Maloney

BARROW boxer Liam Conroy is about to hit the big time after signing a professional contract with Frank Maloney.

Conroy has risen through the ranks at Barrow Amateur Boxing Club since joining the Brook Street gym in 2004 as a 12-year-old.

And now the hard-hitting middleweight’s talent, hard work and dedication have been rewarded after teaming up with Maloney – one of the biggest names in British boxing and the man who helped Lennox Lewis to world heavyweight title glory.

Conroy, 19, has been given the thumbs-up by the British Boxing Board of Control, and could make his debut next month on the under card of British light-middleweight champion Brian Rose’s Sky Sports-televised title defence against Kris Carslaw in Manchester.

Proud Barrow ABC head coach Jeff Moses says Conroy is the first fighter in the club’s 60-year history to come through the ranks and then sign as a professional, while still a member of the Brook Street gym.

“It’s brilliant news for the club. We are all buzzing,” said Moses, who has been part of Barrow ABC for 37 years, as a fighter and coach.

“He’s the first boxer that has come through the ranks of Barrow Amateur Boxing Club in 60 years to sign pro.

“He won divisional titles as a junior, then as a senior, he won divisional titles and beat ABA boxers and won championships both in England and in Denmark and then he transferred to open class.

“He was head-hunted by different promoters and we as a club eventually chose to sign with Frank Maloney – and they don’t come much bigger than that.

“The deal he has signed is for Sky Sports as well – that’s part of the deal.

“We met Frank Maloney in Blackpool and discussed the contract and made sure Liam was happy with everything.”

Moses, who coaches a posse of talented youngsters at Brook Street, is keen to emphasize that although they now have a pro fighter in the camp, the culture of the gym will remain the same.

“It’s a big transformation for the club because the club is now a pro-am club, which means I will have to do a pro course and sign on as a pro coach as well,” he said.

“But obviously my priority is the amateur boxers at the club.

“That is the number one priority, to keep Barrow Amateur Boxing Club going.”

Moses hopes Conroy can inspire others from Barrow ABC to follow in his footsteps, saying: “What Liam has done shows that a kid can progress from being a junior here to step up to senior level, then follow the route of ABA Championships and step up another level and turn pro.

“It shows it can be achieved and that is what the club has done.”

For Conroy – who along with Moses and Reece Frankland – displayed his fitness by helping Barrow ABC win the team prize at the recent Dalton Charter 10k, the hard work has just begun.

“Liam will continue to train at the gym, but for some of his sparring and skills he will have to go to different pro clubs around the country to train,” said Moses.

His training regime worked wonders for him in the amateur ranks, and Moses believes Conroy’s aggressive style in the ring will be even better suited to the pro game.

“He’s ideal for the pro circuit,” he explained.

“He needs to be in there. Pros count body shots and working it sideways. At amateur level they are looking for the nice, tidy clear shot that all the judges can score.

“In professional boxing you want someone who can get stuck in and get the job over as quick as possible and Liam likes to get in and rough it up.”

It’s hoped Conroy will get a sparring session with Rose ahead of his title fight in June, and then he will be ready for that eagerly-awaited debut.

Have your say

Thanks to the evening mail for the amazing write up... Thanks alvin and thanks for the comment mike


Posted by Liam Conroy on 2 June 2012 at 18:43

well done Liam on making it to the big boys ring, Barrow's proud of you :-) and Also to you Jeff , you have done FANTASTIC with Liam and the whole club, a credit to cumbria's sporting body.

Posted by mike hughes on 17 May 2012 at 09:27

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