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Author Topic: Paul & Stephen Smith  (Read 1232 times)
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Team Sevens

« on: January 29, 2011, 09:51:41 AM »

Couldn't see it anywhere

Moving to Joe Gallagher, think it's a cracking move for both
« on: January 29, 2011, 09:51:41 AM »

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The Pittsburg Windmill

« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2011, 10:06:26 AM »

Paul and Stephen Smith To Join Trainer Joe Gallagher

By Terence Dooley

Paul 'Smigga' Smith and his younger brother Stephen 'Swifty' Smith are set to join forces with BoxingScene's British Trainer of the Year award winner Joe Gallagher.  'Smigga' is eager to get his championship career back on track in the wake of a ninth-round British super-middleweight title defeat to James DeGale, who showed dazzling ability and maturity to rip the belt from Smith at the ECHO Arena, Liverpool on December 11th.

Smith previously trained in Liverpool under Georgie and Stephen Vaughan, he is now going to switch his training base to Gallagher's Denton-based gym.  Ironically, the 28-year-old trained in the same gymnasium when it was the home of Billy Graham's Phoenix camp; he may feel that a return to his old stomping ground, not to mention the presence of nutritionist Kerry Kayes, who owns the building, is just the tonic ahead of another title push.

'Swifty' is riding the wave of his first title win, a victory over Scotland's Commonwealth boss John Simpson up in Glasgow last September.  The 25-year-old won ABA titles in 2006 and 2007, he has been out with a hand injury since the win over Simpson but is back in the gym.

Paul who holds a 29-2 (15) record; Stephen is 11-0 (6); they join fellow pros John and Joe Murray, Matthew Macklin, Anthony Crolla, Liam Cullen, Mark Heffron and 2010 NACYP national title winner Marcus Morrison, with Gallagher hoping for more new arrivals, not to mention a few amateurs turning over, as the year rolls on. 

Joe has compiled a 41-0 run in recent years.  Possible world title opportunities for Macklin, set to take on Winky Wright in Las Vegas this May, and John Murray are just around the corner, Gallagher could soon be locking horns with the best trainers in the world as he seeks to continue his personal run of form.

“Smith, like Macklin and John, is a wise bull who can inspire the young fighters.  Manchester United  have got their old heads like Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, now we've got these guys to help bring the younger pros through,” said Gallagher when confirming the Smiths arrival.

He added: “Paul has worked with top-class trainers such as Billy Graham and the Vaughans, he's also been across the pond and worked with Buddy McGirt; he's got a lot of experience and a lot to offer.  Having Paul here is great for someone like Macklin and great for the craic and banter in the gym.  Stephen's got great potential and it will be great to have them around the gym.  We're going to have a busy year and all these lads are amongst the titles.”

Gallagher believes that his stable is not given the recognition it deserves, partly due to the fact that his gym is so mixed.  Murray fought under Mick Hennessy in recent years; Matthew Macklin was with Ricky Hatton, then Frank W***** and is now a Golden Boy fighter; Joe Murray is guided by Hatton Promotions; both Smiths are with W*****.  Gallagher feels that it is easier to gain recognition if your gym is attached to a promotional company.

“I feel its because we're not with a single promoter,” answers Gallagher when asked about his proactive approach to grabbing press exposure for his guys.  “Adam Booth is with Hayemaker so George Groves benefits from that association with David Haye.  Robert McCracken trains a lot of Mick Hennessy's fighters.  Frank W***** has a few trainers who work with his lads.  I've got fighters from all the promoters.  We've got a good mix but don’t always get the credit.  We're not chasing the dough, we're chasing the titles and the fact the gym is so mixed means that people might not give us the recognition they'd give us if all the fighters were with one promoter.”

Gallagher’s biggest blow in recent times came when Tony ‘Jaffa’ Jeffries left the gym in 2009, citing a lack of face time with Joe as the reason for his switch; the trainer, though, maintains that he spreads his attention equally between all of his fighters.  However, he does admit that he is bearing a massive workload.

“This type of workload is heavy for anyone, a lot of trainers have a load of assistants and the assistants have assistants to the assistant but in our gym it just me, the team and the lads – Kerry Kayes's advice, nutrition and CNP's sponsorship plays a big part of the success of this gym, as well as the presence of Mick Williams, the best cutsman in the world, on fight nights,” admitted Gallagher.

“We've a good stable, amateurs like [2010 Junior ABA champion] Zac and [2009 ABA winner] Hosea Burton bring quality and there is always room for quality fighters at Gallagher's Gym – the Burton's are the future of the gym.  The lads spar with pros and they are getting the man strength they need to go further.”

Mark Heffron has motored to 4-0 (3 early) since turning over in September of last year; he won a Junior ABA title and silver at the European Youth Championships.  Gallagher believes that Heffron has the potential to emulate Ricky Hatton, who boxed out of the same premises during his peak years.

“Mark Heffron is just starting out and he’s a really exciting prospect; he's got huge potential and could do for Oldham what Ricky Hatton did for Manchester.  Mark's turned over at the same age as John did and he can look at John and see where he can be in a few years,” he enthused.

“All the lads push each other on the runs, on the circuits and they've got good banter between them.  Older guys like John, Macklin and Paul see themselves in Stephen, Crolla and Heffron, it reminds them of when they were younger and hungry for titles, and that there are guys out there who want to take their titles and rankings from them.  This gym is bursting, it is fantastic right now and these amateurs are training alongside ranked fighters and they are all picking up that little bit of gold dust – I don't have a jewel in the crown, I have a crown full of jewels.  We believe in the work we are doing and that the results speak for themselves.”


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