Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser

Legendrab ‘willbeprou­d of Kieran’


Barn Boxing Club coach Martyn Hetherston says Kieran Bergin’s performanc­e at the 2021 Western District and Elite Youth Finals will have made the late Rab Bannan proud.

Bergin made his way to the final where he faced Luke Mcfadyean of Barrhead, who is a regular in elite competitio­ns, eventually finishing runner-up after a hard battle.

It was Barn’s first fighter at a competitio­n since local legend Bannan passed away earlier this year.

The community stalwart became a hero after his efforts at the club and for providing an outlet for youngsters in the Airdrie and Coatbridge area.

Kids have been kept on the home straight by the discipline instilled in them by Bannan at The Barn and he set three-time world champion Ricky Burns on his road to the top.

Bannan was recognised for his tireless work with the BBC Unsung Hero award in 2015. Hetherston says Bannan would have been delighted with Bergin’s efforts at the finals.

He said:“the legendary Rab Bannan would have been looking down on Kieran and he will been so proud. That was our first fighter since Rab passed away.

“That’s part of the reason why Kieran went to the Championsh­ips. He wanted to be the first Barn fighter since Rab passed away. So we got him ready and the coaches did a great job on him.

“He went in and did us all proud on the night. But the proudest man of all would be Rab Bannan, who would be delighted his club is back on the go.”

With Bannan as his inspiratio­n, Bergin worked day and night to ensure he enjoyed a successful event at the finals, having only fought five times before the Middleweig­ht 75kg fight.

Hetherston added:“rab had The Barn for over 50 years so this was very emotional for us.

“Kieran came to us at the end and we were taking off his gumshield and I told him he could probably hear Rab shouting at him.

“It was sensationa­l. The other boy was an internatio­nal fighter and people have been telling me what a tasty, tasty boy we have. His heart is the size of the hall he fought in.

“But we were delighted to get Kieran in and out of the event unscathed.

“He run it very close. This boy doesn’t shirk nobody. He came to us at 93 kg around eight weeks or so before the fight and wanted stuck in at 75.

“I told him it was a bit of a shift but he said he wanted to do it for Rab. He got down to the 75. He ran every night doing five miles. He put his gear on and went running in the rain at night.

“He was in the gym working when the rest of the boys were away home.”

 ?? ?? Talented Barn boxer Kieran Bergin
Talented Barn boxer Kieran Bergin

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