The unbeaten Tyrone McKenna will face Anthony Upton Jr on the undercard of Carl Frampton v Nonito Donaire on April 21 following an injury to McKenna’s original opponent, Phil Sutcliffe Jr.
Promising super-lightweight McKenna (15-0-1-KO6) will enjoy plenty of home support in Belfast on the night but must now redirect his attention to Upton Jr (17-1-KO6) after Dublin’s Sutcliffe Jr sustained a knee injury.
McKenna said: “It’s always a disappointment because we’ve been preparing for Phil Sutcliffe Jr for the last seven weeks but we’ve managed to find a really good replacement.
“It’s another Irishman stepping up to the plate; another Belfast man and that’s very exciting for the fans. I’ve known Anthony Upton Jr since he started boxing and I know it’ll be an exciting fight.
“It’s a fight I believe I’ll win. I’m looking forward to it. I have to change a few things tactically but I’ll be more than ready in four weeks’ time.”
Upton Jr said: “I’m very happy with this opportunity. I’ve waited for it for a while. Tyrone has been on big shows before and this is my chance to use that platform to show people who I am.
“I’m looking forward to letting everyone know what I’m about. Everyone’s in for a good night.”
While devastated to miss out on a huge chance to shine, Sutcliffe Jr is eagerly awaiting scan results and is determined to regain fitness and a date with McKenna at the first available opportunity.
Sutcliffe Jr said: “Everything was going well and I was asked to do a few rounds with a local lad. In the fifth round, something went in my knee. We’re awaiting an MRI scan as we speak.
“There were a few words said between Tyrone and I and I was looking forward to fighting him so much. It’s desperate at the minute. I’ll make the recovery process as quick as possible and get back to action.
“I wish Anthony Upton the best of luck in the fight. We could be making a fight against him if all goes well for him on the night. For me, I just want to be back training as soon as possible.”
Follow Phil Sutcliffe Jr on Instagram @p.sutcliffe