CORK'S Ryan Sheehan won the Professional World Super Bantamweight Muay Thai boxing WBC and ISKA Championship belts when he beat Thailand’s Jomhod Eminentair at the Neptune Stadium recently.
The judges on the night gave him a split decision win after five grueling rounds in front of a large home crowd.
It was a great night for his club Siam Warriors, as they hosted the Presence of Greatnesses event and now Ryan holds both the World ISKA, WBC to add to his WKA he won in 2016.
The 25 year-old, Sheehan who hails from the Knocknaheeny area on the Northside of Cork city is a very humble and quiet young man.
He is the son of Alfie and Lorraine, and his siblings are Marie, Sofie, Claire and Jamie.
Ryan started the sport as a 15 year old, training twice a week in the Siam Warriors at the at Rock Steps in Blarney Street under the guidance of Martin Horgan.
“I first joined the Warriors ten years ago and its been a roller coaster ride if I’m honest,” Ryan said.
“I was playing soccer with some friends with Everton and two of the lads just joined the club and asked me to come along one night.
"I was very apprehensive at first, however, after a couple of weeks I was hooked.
"I loved the discipline and the work ethic of the sport.”
Sheehan has an impressive record of 26 wins, 9 losses and 2 draws in his 37 professional fights to date.
He come along way from that boy who first walked into the hall in the old school in Blarney Street to an hardened World Champion today.
He won the European title beating Tristan Caetano after a doctor stoppage in his home town in 2016.
Then he went to Japan were he faced reigning ISKA Muay Thai World champion Shiro at the Shin Nihon Kickboxing Association Winners event Tokyo Japan.
That fight was declared an majority draw by the judges after three rounds.
Sheehan won the WKA Muay Thai World Bantamweight title the 11th of December 2016 when he beat the Japan fighter Hiroyuki by unanimous decision.
Sheehan successfully defended his European title in 2017 beating Nestor Rodrigues from Spain with a win by unanimous decision at the Neptune Stadium.
“I turned professional in 2015 and won the ISKA Muay Thai European title a year later beating Tristan Caetano who had a lot more experience that me at the time.
”It took me a few years to break into the WBC rankings and entered in at number 19 and I had to fight opponents that were ranked higher that myself.
“The following May, I fought for my first world title, fighting Shiro in Tokyo, however, that fight was declared a draw and Shiro kept his titles.
”I won my first World title in December 2016 in Dublin when I beat Hiroyuki from Japan and won the WKA Champion belt by unanimous decision.
”In the next two years I had five fights, winning two and losing three and I became a bit frustrated with myself and took a year away from the sport.
"I did a lot of soul searching and came back much stronger mentally and physically.
”I came back in February 2018 and became a lot more focused, I had four very high level fights in which I won two, drew one and drew one.” Fast forward four years and Sheehan had a world title fight in Neptune against an very experienced Jomhod Eminentair for the vacant ISKA Muay Thai World Bantamweight and the WBC Muay Thai World Super Bantamweight titles in the Neptune Stadium.
Eminentair was the clear favorite to win the fight, however, Ryan dug deep in the final two rounds to win the titles by a split decision.
This is a superb achievement by the Northside native and to have a three-time World Champion living in Cork is something that all Corkonians should be very proud of.
This sport can be very expensive and sponsorship is vital for Ryan to continue his journey in the sport.
I certainly think that local business and politicians have missed a trick here as I’m sure Ryan would be great brand for any company.
He is also looking for any local Physiotherapist to come on board to help him prepare when he is in training camps.
Sheehan is also very generous with his time and spent time in the North Monastery Primary School recently doing a questions and answer session with 4th, 5th and 6th classes in the school.
Ryan is very proud of his roots and wants to be a role model for all young people in Cork and one day open his own school.
Anyone who would like to sponsor Ryan, or help with any charity events can contact him directly at Ryansheehan97@gmail.com.