Unbeaten, fast-rising youngsters Archie Sharp, Lewis Crocker, Tyrone McCullagh, Sunny Edwards and Sean McComb made up half of the 10 picks in the popular magazine.
WBO European super-featherweight champion Sharp enjoyed a stellar 2018; upsetting Lyon Woodstock in Leicester with a masterclass to seize his title and set up tilts at even bigger prizes.
Belfast welterweight Crocker has been touted as one of the sport’s most exciting young fighters for some time – knocking out all six of his professional opponents before rounding off the year with a comfortable win over the famously durable William Warburton.
Former Irish amateur captain McComb – another product of the famous boxing city of Belfast – has impressed since turning professional. ‘The Public Nuisance’ has eased to 5-0-KO3 in style; looking relaxed and picking his shots with wisdom beyond his tender years.
Another man to claim European honours in 2018 was Derry’s McCullagh, who outclassed Josh Kennedy to lift the WBO European super-bantamweight crown. ‘White Chocolate’ has been described by Olympic hero and long-time sparring partner Paddy Barnes as “unique.”
It’s been a sensational year for the Edwards family with Sunny’s older brother Charlie becoming WBC world flyweight champion but the younger sibling was first to a big prize with an assured victory over Ryan Farrag earning the WBO European flyweight strap, followed up with a WBO European title win over Junior Granados to end a stellar year.
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