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Dublin: 11 °C Thursday 24 October, 2019

Dublin's Lynn 'The Hunter' Harvey lands her dream fight for the European title

The Kilbarrack woman will become Ireland’s first ever female European champion in the pro ranks if she beats Catalina Diaz in Spain.

Lynn Harvey will travel to Spain to fight for the EBU strawweight tile.
Lynn Harvey will travel to Spain to fight for the EBU strawweight tile.
Image: Lynn Harvey/Instagram (@harvey_wall_banger)

DUBLIN’S LYNN HARVEY will aim to become Ireland’s first-ever female professional European boxing champion when she fights Spaniard Catalina Diaz for the EBU strawweight title in the latter’s homeland next month.

Diaz had been selected to fight for the title but had struggled to find a willing opponent until Kilbarrack woman Harvey put the hand up.

Harvey [5-1, 4KOs] and Diaz [4-2, 0KOs] will both drop from 108 pounds to 105 in order to fight for the prestigious blue belt.

The fight is tentatively scheduled to take place in the Andalucian port city of Cadiz on 27 February, and will be contested over 10 two-minute rounds.

In a Facebook post in which she confirmed the fight, Harvey revealed she has had a picture of the European title as a screensaver on her phone for over a year.

“This is the opportunity I’ve been waiting for,” she said.

“After all my bad luck and doors shut in my face, my break has finally come.

At the end of next month I will fight for the European title, the blue belt, over in Spain. I’ve had a picture of this exact belt on my vision board for over a year and as a screensaver on my phone. I knew this would happen.

“I am 100% confident I can win this fight. It’s the lightest I will ever have had to go, but with the expert guidance of John Connor throughout camp I will make it. I am very big and very strong for these [weight] categories.

I’m asking all of my friends, and Ireland, to get behind me, as this is a huge opportunity.

In what is an eminently winnable fight for the 37-year-old ‘Hunter’, victory would propel her to the precipice of world title contention only two fights after she walked away from the sport.

Harvey retired in the summer of 2017 citing personal reasons, but returned to the ring at Celtic Clash 7 in Good Counsel GAA Club, Drimnagh, last month, blowing away Hungarian journeywoman Kitti Kolompar in a matter of seconds.

The sole defeat on the Dubliner’s record came in her second fight in November of 2016 when she was outpointed by the significantly larger and heavier Mary Romero.

One of Diaz’s two career defeats came as recently as last September, but she rebounded with a win over unbeaten compatriot Joana Suarez a month later.

Harvey is one of five Irish female professional boxers currently active in the ring, the others being Katie Taylor, Elaine Greenan, Cathy McAleer and Siobhán O’Leary. World-level operator Christina McMahon has not officially retired from the sport but hasn’t fought since March of 2016.

The Monaghan woman has worked in a training capacity with Greenan and sparred McAleer as part of the latter’s bid to receive a Boxing Union of Ireland fighter’s licence as she transitioned from the world of kickboxing.

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