A Co Kildare teenager is setting an Irish record becoming the youngest female boxer to turn professional.
Katelynn Phelan(18), is being trained by her father, Paddy, at St Brigid’s Boxing Club, and is getting set for her pro- debut on March 30, next, at the National Stadium.
Coming from a family of boxers, her father admits that he did not want her to join the sport. However, a determined young Katelynn made sure she got her way.
He said: “She kept coming back to me and said, ‘Dad will you please?.’ She went to another member of the club and persuaded to be allowed join. I am glad that she did, she is phenomenal, a super girl.”
When she started boxing at St Brigid’s, there was just Katelynn and one other girl.
14 years boxing for Katelynn, she says she never thought about what she would do, otherwise.
A winner of a bronze medal in India last year, she also scooped bronze in the Europeans in 2016, along with winning several Golden Girl Championships in Sweden.
The former primary school student at Scoil Bhríde Naofa, Kildare, and Kildare Primary School, is now dedicating all of her time to boxing.
The Lilywhite becomes the seventh active Irish female pro fighter after unified lightweight champ Katie Taylor, upcoming European strawweight title challenger Lynn Harvey, Siobhan O’Leary, Cathy McAleer, Elaine Greenan, and former two-time world title challenger Christina McMahon who has recently made a return.
Daughter of Martina and Paddy, she is the youngest of four. Her brother Allan Phelan (25), is the current featherweight pro, while her brother Darren(29), is also an accomplished boxer.
Her sister Lisa- Marie (31), a qualified dietician advises her on what to eat while her father trains her. She trains daily, twice a day.
She said: “For sparring, I eat plenty of protein and a lot of vegetables. Breakfast is porridge oats and berries. For lunch I could have a slim bagel with turkey, ham and lettuce. Sometimes I have desserts, I make my own ice-cream with almond milk. I cook my own meals. Dinner could be turkey or mince, with brocolli, rice, a jacket potato.”
Extending gratitude to her father, she said: “I would never be where I am only for him, he has got me this far and will get me much further.”
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