A night full of action-packed fights is on the cards next month, when the Macmillan Rumble takes place at the Fir Trees Hotel.
Organised as a fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support, the charity boxing extravaganza will see some 16 bouts on the night and organisers are hoping for a knock-out night of entertainment.
Currently all 32 boxers are deep into their training, as they’re being coached by well-known trainers, Paul Doherty and Dominic McConnell. And they won’t have any excuse when it comes to fitness either, as they’ve all been offered free gym membership at Hurtlocker in Strabane, in the run-up to the big night.
“We’re predicting a sell-out,” one of the organisers, Patrick McCloskey remarked this week.
“There will be room for between 600 and 700 at the Fir Trees, the way it’s being set up so hopefully the tickets will go well.
“There’ll be a lot of fights and a lot of big fights.”
Apart from the many tantalising match-ups on the night, the main event is billed as Ryan Doherty vs Eugene McCauley.
Patrick continued, “It’s going to be a professional set-up from start to finish. We’re mimicking the way a UFC event goes off and we’ll be videoing the fighters as they make their way to the ring.
“But at the same time, it’s going to be a bit of craic. There are some joke-y fights and there are some more serious fights, ones where you just don’t know which way it’s going to turn out or who’ll come out on top.”
Patrick explained that he had been considering holding such an event locally for some time.
“I’d been thinking about it,” he admitted.
“Then after James McMenamin’s mother, Kathleen passed away last year the two of us decided we’d like to give it a go. We sat down with Ryan Doherty and the three of us worked out what we were going to do.
“It’s a lot of work, which we didn’t realise before we started but it should be a great night.
“We set a target of raising £5,000 but we’re hoping to smash that.”
• The Macmillan Rumble takes place on Friday, March 23 at the Fir Trees Hotel in Strabane. Tickets are priced at £10, doors open at 6.30pm and the first fight is at 7.30pm.