PAULY UPTON says he’s the proudest man on the planet following his vacant Irish super-welterweight title victory in Northampton last Saturday night.
The Ricky Hatton-trained 27-year-old halted the experienced Terry Maughan in the sixth round to become the Emerald Isle’s champion and he still hasn’t come down from cloud nine.
Upton, the oldest of three fighting brothers, was the aggressor from the start and rocked Maughan in the second round before turning up the pressure four rounds later.
A right hand to the body forced Maughan to wince and drop his hands. Seizing his moment, Upton followed up with a barrage of punches upstairs that had Maughan flailing against the ropes before referee David John Irving stopped the contest.
“I’m absolutely buzzing,” Pauly said. “I was an Irish champion as an amateur and I can’t put into words what it means to me to win this title as a pro.
“I said before the fight I wanted to win the belt for my grandad and I can’t wait to show him it. That said, I want to dedicate this win to everyone who supported me, including Ricky and the team, my dad, my brothers and all of the Upton Clan.
“What’s next? I don’t know, because winning this hasn’t really sunken in yet, but I hope one day I can go back to Ireland and defend the belt. That would be like a dream come true.”
Meanwhile, big-punching Northern Irish featherweight James Tennyson swaggers into London this weekend intent on relieving Ryan Walsh of his British title.
The Lisburn born ‘Assassin’ has clattered 13 of his 16 victims to early defeat since debuting as a teenager in 2012 and he knows his best route to bagging a Lonsdale Belt rests with him knocking the Norfolk man out.
Thus far, the 22-year-old’s potent punching means that, on average, his fights conclude inside three rounds. Indeed, Tennyson’s 17 fight slate lists just 47 rounds and – despite Irish and Celtic title experience – he is yet to venture past session eight.
Heavyweight sensation Hughie Fury, younger cousin of Tyson, headlines the card at the Copper Box Arena as he challenges American Fred Kassi for the Vacant WBO Intercontinental Title, while Belfast man Jamie Conlan challenges Anthony Nelson for Commonwealth Super-Flyweight belt on an action-packed card.