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Exclusive: Trainer Joe Gallagher reflects on remarkable year, promises plenty more to come

Matt Horan 02/12/2015

Joe Gallagher

Joe Gallagher has had an outstanding year in all aspects and after winning the trainer of the year at the BBBofC awards, he is confident that 2016 will only go to bring more glory for his fighters.

With an ever improving list of boxers under his coaching, Gallagher’s stable seems to be going from strength to strength – Manchester’s Anthony Crolla the latest to triumph and capture a world title under his tutelage.

With WBO super-welterweight world champion Liam Smith the only fighter still with a fight scheduled for this year, the 47-year old has given his overall assessment of how 2015 has gone so far.

“It’s certainly been a fantastic year for us and we’ve achieved so much. If we start with the Smith brothers, Paul has had some great experiences with the Arthur Abraham rematch and then fighting Andre Ward. Callum won the British, Stephen won his world title eliminator and obviously Liam picked up the WBO belt in October– so they should all be really proud,” Gallagher exclusively told World Boxing News.

“We’ve had Scott Quigg emphatically knocking out Kiko Martinez to keep his world title, setting up a huge unification fight with Carl Frampton while Scotty Cardle picked up the British title. Hosea Burton, Callum Johnson and Marcus Morrison have all remained unbeaten and continued their progress, so I’m delighted with how it’s gone.

“Then last week Anthony Crolla won us another world title. His achievement hasn’t quite sunk in yet – it’s certainly been a rollercoaster year. Twelve months ago we thought he was finished with the sport, but with all the ups and downs – he managed to do it. Incredible to say the least.”

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Although Gallagher runs out of superlatives to describe how 2015 has gone, he still has some regret and hopes for further improvement in the next twelve months.

“The only low for me this year is with Burton. He was in fantastic form heading up to his fight with Tony Hill last weekend, but had to pull out at the last minute with injury and it’s been frustrating for him. I’m sure though that 2016 will be a big year for him and Callum Johnson in the light heavyweight division,” he continued.

“We still have Liam to fight later this month and we will be perfectly prepared for him to end the year nicely. We have three world champions at the minute and it’s a coaches dream. The whole gym is buzzing and we just want to keep the momentum going through to the new year.

Although Christmas and new year would normally suggest time off in most professions, Gallagher will be as busy as ever – as he seeks further glory for his gym.

He said: “The work doesn’t stop for us and it’s going to be a very busy Christmas period. Paul Smith and Johnson will be out in January, then we have Quigg, Stephen Smith, Crolla and Callum Smith all scheduled to fight in the following months.

“It really is exciting times and hopefully we will have five world champions by next summer with Stephen and Callum.”

Matt Horan is a lead writer for WBN. Follow on Twitter @mhoran123