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Nevin set for low-key comeback but has sight set on bigger things

The Mullingar man remains undefeated as a professional.

Nevin after a win over Jack Heath in 2014.
Nevin after a win over Jack Heath in 2014.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

JOHN JOE NEVIN hopes to revive his ambitions of professional glory, starting with a low-key comeback bout in England later this month.

Olympic silver medallist Nevin will make his return to the ring for the first time in 13 months on Friday 29 September on a small-hall show in Tolworth, south-west London, with an opponent yet to be confirmed for his six-round lightweight bout.

While the Mullingar native is undefeated as a professional, carrying an 8-0 record, his paid career has been beset by misfortune and injury since he switched over from the amateur ranks three-and-a-half years ago.

Nevin suffered two broken legs in an attack in April 2014 just one month after making his debut and while he made an impressive recovery to fight again later that year, his progress has been stop-start ever since.

However, the London 2012 silver medallist hopes to finally gain some momentum once he makes his ring return later this month.

“I’m flying,” said Nevin, who plans to campaign as a featherweight in the long-term, on his planned return.

I’ve only done six-rounders so far, but after this fight I want to move up a level, I want to move quick now. I’m 28 years of age and I know I have the ability to be a world champion.”

The two-time amateur world medallist has not fought since a points victory over American journeyman Jesus Lule in Philadelphia in August, 2016.

His ring return had been planned for last March, but the bout was cancelled due to a rib injury.

“Once I get this fight under my belt, I’ll look at getting a few more soon,” said Nevin “The problem is, you can’t avoid injuries. When you jump in the swimming pool, you get wet. But hopefully the injuries are at an end now.

I was meant to be fighting in March and I picked up rib injury. I was sparring Jason Sosa, who was a world champion, and we had two or three goo days of sparring, but just on the last day – I shouldn’t have even been sparring that day – but I was caught on the last day and fractured a rib.”

Nevin’s win over Lule marked his only bout since November 2015 and the former European amateur champion is keen to finally get his world professional title ambitions back on track.

“If I get a bit of momentum going, it could turn into anything. I can turn anyone over on my day, so once I get a bit of momentum going and get working on 12 rounds I can be in with the best of them,” added the decorated Westmeath man, who was the first Irish male amateur to claim a hat-trick of major medals at Olympic, world and European championships.

The 28-year-old has been training under his old amateur coach Brian McKeown and plans on linking up with veteran London trainer Jim McDonnell in the English capital to finalise preparations for his comeback fight.

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