Feargal McCrory.

McCrory to take on DC's Roach

“Fearless” Feargal McCrory was driving to a local hardware store in Tyrone last April to pick up material for a home project when his phone rang. A life-long dream was about to come true.

Back-to-back victories at Madison Square Garden -- the second one a three-round pummeling of Mexican Carlos Carlson for the WBA Continental Americas super featherweight title last March – had elevated McCrory to #12 on the WBA rankings. That, in the mind of champion Lamont Roach’s brain trust, was good enough to earn the unbeaten Irish southpaw [16-0, 8 KOs] a world title shot. Hence the call to Tyrone in late April.

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 McCrory and Roach square off on June 28 at the 4,200-capacity Entertainment and Sports Arena in southeast Washington, D.C.  The arena is home to the Washington Mystics of the WNBA.

 “I wanna be world champion and yeah, I accepted right away,” said the self-managed McCrory, who’s 31 and three years older than Roach. Days later, he was back States-side to prepare for the biggest fight of his career.

 “He's a great fighter. He’s champion of the world and they don't give out word titles,” the challenger said of the 24-1-1 [9 KOs] Roach. “I'm grateful for the opportunity and this is something I've wanted from maybe a very young age. It’s an opportunity that I I've always dreamed about.”

He’s been going through his paces at his trainer Colin “Pops” Morgan’s Fight Club gym in lower Manhattan. “We're in a really good place. We have some really good sparring partners,” he told the Echo. “We’ve brought in smaller [guys]. Brought in stronger [guys], all different shapes and sizes. We're preparing to be the best version of me that I can be.”

McCrory turned pro in 2015, but like most people globally, was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, he was inactive in 2020 and 2021.

Born in Washington, DC, Roach is the hometown favorite going into the match. He’ll be making his first defense of the WBA belt that he won in his last fight, a 12-round split points decision over Hector Luis Garcia in Las Vegas last November. 

From the Dominican Republic, Garcia, like McCrory, is a southpaw.

Roach’s only loss in a 10-year pro career came in 2019 when he was outpointed by then WBO super featherweight titlist Jamel Herring. Two years later, Herring successfully defended the same belt against Carl Frampton via sixth round stoppage in Dubai.

Roach has also held the North American Boxing Association super featherweight title.