Lee Murtagh – Films, Malta and Licenses

lees-boxing-column-1024x239A mixed bag this issue. I’ll start of with the ‘Boxing Down in Bethlehem’ film which is been made by local film maker Ronald J. Wright.

Ron started this project about two years ago. At the time, he just wanted to make a film about a local boxing club and thought there might be a story behind the name Bethlehem.  However he changed direction once I won the Irish title and began to focus on the build up to my fight in America and actually hired a film crew out there.   Ron’s now busy with the editing which is not an easy task, he has to edit eighty hours of footage into a seventy minute film, which he will then take round various film festivals. With the amount of work, time and money Ron has spent I hope he sees some success with the film, he deserves it. I’m not bothered about image rights or anything, but I hope we are able to premier it in Leeds so I can watch it with my nearest and dearest. So look out for it, we’ll be rolling out the red carpet, or I might find an old red rug…Lee the Movie as we’ve nicknamed it, ‘Coming soon to a picture house near you!’

We’ve had a lot of new starters at Bethlehem recently and hopefully we’ll see some new faces on my shows in the not too distant future. It’s nice to observe the different boxers at different levels and see how they come on.  Some take to it naturally, some need a little help but I do my best to make sure it’s an inclusive club with no cliques.

And next a trip to Malta coming up in May, Billy Wilkinson will be fighting for the EBF Super Bantamweight European title. It’s a  rematch and he lost the previous fight where he quite literally fell out with himself in the ring.

After winning the EBF English title, I’m sure Billy has learned from his mistakes and we’ll see a different fight this time round.  Liam Hayes is also on the bill in only his fifth EBF fight. Liam was due to fight for the EBF Celtic title in March but it was cancelled at the last minute, hopefully Malta will make up for his disappointment. It just proves how the world is getting smaller that Liam is fighting abroad so early in his career.

Lee-boxing-licenceTalking of Malta,The Maltese Boxing Commission (MBC) has staged shows in England recently and I was recently granted a license to referee MBC fights. It’s not as many think a direct            challenge to the British Board, the difference is they are happy to have amateur, semi pro and professional fights on the same bill, like in every other country in Europe. We’ll hear more from the Maltese sanctioned fights as the shows get bigger and bigger.

I’m also working the corner in April for Irish/ American boxer Oisin Fagan. He’s fighting for the World Boxing Federation World Lightweight title in Chester. Oisin was very helpful in getting me on the bill in USA and I’m only happy to return a favour in what is a massive night for him. Incidentally this show is licensed by the German Boxing Association.

I’m still waiting to know if I’m retiring. There was a question on my annual MRI scan which is been independently assessed. It’s nothing major and I know that in America who take a more overall view of these things it’s not an issue, I’ll make a decision when I know more about it. Until I find out, I’ll just carry on going about my business as usual, it’s not as though I’ve nothing to keep me busy!

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3 Comments

  1. Vincent Le Mare says:

    Fine words, as always from the Leeds 9 pugilist.

  2. Good luck Lee, hope the medical query is nothing major. Can’t wait to see the film as well.

  3. Laura & John Cauchi says:

    I came across this article today – very interesting and wish you all the best.
    We hope to see you again in Malta next year.

    Best wishes from John & Laura in Australia

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