TJ Doheny is the Downey's Auto Stop/Leinster Express Sports Star of the Year for 2018

Rory Delaney

Reporter:

Rory Delaney

Email:

rory@leinsterexpress.ie

TJ Doheny is the Downey's Auto Stop/Leinster Express Sports Star of the Year for 2018

TJ Doheny with his coach, Hector Bermudez, and Sean Gibbons, after defeating Ryosuke Iwasa. Pic: Aflo/Rex/Shutterstock

World boxing champion TJ Doheny is the 2018 Leinster Express Sports Star of the Year, in association with Downey's Auto Stop.

Doheny claimed the IBF Super Bantamweight world title in August of last year after a 12 round epic with Japanese fighter Ryosuke Iwasa. Doheny took a unanimous decision over Iwasa in his own back yard, with the fight taking place in Tokyo.

The Portlaoise man has since gone on to defend the title successfully in New York, and he has turned his attentions a clash with Daniel Roman in April of this year, reportedly in Los Angeles.

It is the culmination of a remarkable journey for the Portlaoise man, who left Ireland during the recession after missing out on selection for the Irish Olympic squad. He headed for Australia with the intention of staying for a year, but wound up staying much longer, and eventually returned to boxing down under.

He had to work his way up through the ranks and his hard work and sacrifice was rewarded when he became a mandatory challenger for the IBF title in 2017. He finally got his chance at the belt in August of last year, and he made no mistake to bring a world title back to Portlaoise.

And he certainly did do that, with a huge crowd turning out for his homecoming and civic reception in Portlaoise last September.

Now based out of Sydney, where he lives with his partner Becca and son Theo, he trains in Boston with the renowned Hector Bermudez. He recently signed with both MTK Global and Matchroom Boxing, and his career looks set to reach another level in the months ahead.

Doheny was one of twelve monthly winners of the Downey's Auto Stop/Leinster Express Sports Star of the Month in 2018, and was chosen as the overall winner by the Leinster Express editorial staff.