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Dunne, ex-world champ, calls it quits

The 30 year-old Neilstown boxer, who spent the first four years of his career under the tutelage of master trainer Freddie Roach in Los Angeles, hinted at a loss of appetite for prizefighting.

He departs with a 28-2 record [15 KOs] and the distinction of having been the fifth Irish fighter to win a European title (super bantamweight).

"After a lot of thought and reflection the time has finally come to bring my career as a professional boxer to an end," Dunne said in Dublin. "For the past 25 years boxing has been my life but now it is time for a fresh start."

Floored three times by Thai banger Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym, en route to ceding the WBA belt via third round KO at Dublin's O2 Arena in what was his last fight, Dunne went on:

"The easiest thing in the world would have been to climb through the ropes and fight again but honesty has always been very important to me and I am being honest to myself, to my family and to my supporters with this decision.

"The great Irish fans that traveled on the journey to a world title belt with me deserved better than to pay their hard earned cash just to see me go

through the motions. I could never do that to them.

"Thankfully I have realized all my dreams and achieved all my goals since I followed my dad into boxing. To win a world title is something I will never forget and something I am so proud of and I would like to thank everyone who helped make that possible," he said.

Dunne was trailing badly on points at the O2 Arena 11 months ago when he halted then champion Ricardo Cordoba in the 11th round to capture the WBA 122-pound crown.

Said promoter Brian Peters: "Bernard's decision to hang up his gloves has my full backing and support. We've had a number of discussions since Bernard lost his World title last September and having scaled the heights he has as a World and European Champion he believes that now is the right time to walk away and I am 100 percent behind that decision."

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