NORTHERN Sporting Club have unveiled the latest boxers to sign to the stable are former amateur sensations Ireland’s Edward Donovan and Jason Harty. The pair are looking to progress their respective careers under the guidance of David and Matty McAllister.

Both fighters have an excellent record in the unpaid ranks with Edward (who is brother of Top Rank fighter Paddy Donovan, trained by Andy Lee) having been a multi-time Irish champion as well being voted European fighter of the year when he won gold. Jason [above left] can also lay claim to winning multiple Irish championships as well as also having won a European gold and silver in the past. They currently stand at 1-0 in the pros with both having had winning debuts earlier this year.

Speaking to Boxing News, Donovan explained how the new look training regime would work: “I’m obviously based in Ireland and will be training with my dad Martin but also Joe Pennington in Manchester and then coming up here at times as well so it will be a good combination of the three.”

With the Tokyo Olympics underway, I wondered if he had any regrets about turning pro or had he wished he had stayed amateur longer. “The Olympic games was always a dream of mine but through [alleged] corruption at the last Olympics [when Michael Conlan was robbed of a decision] and thinking it was a long road to wait I was thinking that one bad decision could change everything for you. I got the offer to go pro and decided to take it. I had a couple of offers from America including Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions and also MTK over here but I just thought that with the McAllisters having a more close-knit team that they would do the best for us. I’m totally happy where I am now and looking forward to getting out again and moving forward with my career,” he said. “I’m hoping to be out in October and potentially have had three fights by Christmas, I’d like to be fast-tracked and I want to be kept busy so within two years it would be great to have had 12 fights and be 12–0. The gym is lovely up here and I felt at home straightaway as soon as I stepped through the doors. My brother has done well in his career so far so I’d like to be following in his footsteps, we both have good styles for the pros so I’m looking forward to us both having good careers.”

Jason who will compete at middleweight was in a similar frame of mind stating, “I’d like to have had two or three fights this year and then hopefully have around 10 fights under my belt by this time next year. Whatever fights the management team have in mind for me I’ll take, I’m a hard puncher so the fans can expect big knockouts when they come out to see me, as well as being Edward’s brother-in-law [Jason is married to his sister], we also train together so it’s good to get out on the runs with him although he is a bit slower than me so I’m always waiting for him!”

David McCallister was delighted with his new signings and explained how it happened. “We met their trainer Martin down at a Carl Frampton fight. We got on and we’ve always kept in touch. They came up for a bit of training and we had an honest discussion about what they wanted to achieve and how we could help them. To be honest as soon as we’d seen them in the gym, we could see the amateur skillset background and you don’t win the honours they have won so far by being a run of the mill fighter. We agreed things from there and I think it says quite a lot about what we are doing up here that talented young fighters like this who have spoken to bigger promoters and managers have decided to trust us,” he said.

“We have a great set up with Andrew Usher from Evolved Performance doing all the sports science for our boxers as well which would cost a fortune if they had to try and source that themselves. We like to think we are quite forward thinking so hopefully it’s the start of big things to come from the whole team.”