Tonight in the Royal Theatre, Castlebar, Henry ‘The Western Warrior’ Coyle will put his World Boxing Foundation light middleweight title on the line for the first time. The Geesala native won the title last August with a technical knock out over Italian Elio Cotena in the same venue, and this evening he will be squaring up against 34-year-old Argentinean hit man Marcelo Alejandro Rodriguez with the title on the line.
Coyle knows that he will have to be on top of his game if he is going to retain his title against Rodriguez who has a 79 bouts under his belt, nearly four times as many as Coyle, as a professional and the Argentinean is coming into the contest with 60 wins from those professional fights and 43 of them coming by the way of knock out. His latest fight saw him pick up a knock out win over Hernan Arredondo in Buenos Aires back in June.
Speaking about his opponent at the launch of the fight Coyle said: "I have to give credit to my opponent, he's coming all the way from Argentina and he's not coming for the weather, he's coming to take my title”, and “he's a big puncher and very experienced. He has been in there with some of the best in the world and he's had over twice as many knockouts as I've had fights so I have to respect that. My dad and my trainer Sam Colonna will watch some of his past fights and come up with the game plan and then it will be my job to implement it on the night.”
The Argentinean himself is expecting a good contest in the ring, in the build up to the fight he said, “I've fought outside of Argentina many times including fights in Mexico, Germany, Australia, France, and Uruguay so it is nothing new to me. I have watched some of Coyle’s fights and he seems to have a very similar style to me. We both like to stand in the middle of the ring and have a fight. This won't be a dancing competition, we will meet head on and deliver a great fight for the Irish fans but I am afraid they will not be so happy with the result!"
There will be plenty of other Mayo interest on the bill with an all Mayo clash kicking things off when two Ballyhaunis boxers will make their pro debuts on the bill. Michael Waldron and Brandon Peake will punch for pay for the first time on the card. Also in action on the bill is former Irish light heavyweight champion, Mayo’s John Waldron who will take another step to reclaiming that title when he takes on Dublin’s Brendan Fitzpatrick. Also joining Coyle on the bill will be Cavan’s Andy Murray who will also be taking on an Argentinean Sergio Priotti in his first fight since being defeated in an European Title bout last year. There will also be another WBF title up for grabs when Chris Goodwin and Istvan Kiss meet for the vacant light heavyweight title.
Tickets for the event are on sale and cost €40, €60, and €100 and are available from the Royal Theatre box office or from ticketmaster outlets. The fight will also be broadcast live on Irishtv.ie and on Sky channel 191 and freesat channel 403.