Boxer Stephen Tiffney says he feels privileged to have sparred with IBF world super bantamweight champion Carl Frampton in London last week.
The Edinburgh featherweight, who has two victories to his name since signing professional terms with MGM Scotland in June, was invited by Cyclone promoter and boxing legend Barry McGuigan to train with the Northern Irishman ahead of his unified IBF and WBA super bantamweight world title showdown with Scott Quigg in Manchester on February 27.
Tiffney, 27, is currently preparing for his third pro-bout with Sheffield’s Ryan Hanson in Glasgow later this month and admits the timing couldn’t have been any better.
“I enjoyed it, but it was really tough,” the reigning Scottish 60kg champion said. “I knew it was going to be hard going down there, but it was harder than I thought it was going to be. It’s experience you can’t buy. Especially with my own fight coming up, I couldn’t have wished for a better opportunity.
“He’s world champion so to just to be asked was great. Terry [McCormack] had mentioned my name to the McGuigans when they were in Edinburgh for Josh Taylor’s fight in October, so Barry gave me a call just after the new year to ask me down. We were using David Haye and George Groves’ gyms, guys you see on the TV, so it was good to see what they actually go through in preparation for their fights.
“Carl wasn’t holding back,” Tiffney continued. “I couldn’t believe how hard he punches, it was crazy. He’s shorter than me and fights the weight below, but he’s a freak of nature with his strength. I always thought he was going to beat Quigg but I’m in doubts now that he’ll win having been in the ring with him. He could fight this very second even though the fight is still seven weeks away.”
Tiffney revealed his first Christmas spent as a paid boxer was slightly different this time round.
“I had to really watch what I was eating. Normally I take a wee break off but having the fight this month, I had to be careful,” he added.