Finals – 14th Aug, 2011
After three days of boxing shrouded in controversy, the Open Elite Competition came to a conclusion today at the National stadium. In all we had 11 fights consisting of nine finals and two female internationals.
Kenny Egan continued on the road to what the Clondalkin fighter hopes will be his second Olympic appearance following his silver success last time out. . He stayed on track today by way of a 13-5 victory over Stephen Ward (Monkstown, Antrim).
At 52kg Michael Conlan made it four wins out of four against fellow Belfast antagonist Ruairi Dalton with Conlan,s superior fistic skills making him the clear winner by 15-8.
At 64k Ross Hickey showed why he is Senior Champion by overcoming a 4-6 first round deficit heading into the second. Hickey who missed the Europeans through Army commitments changed tack to finish up winning the contest by a 19-12 score-line.
Michael O’Reilly continued to impress the large crowd in attendance during his contest with seasoned international Roy Sheehan . Despite the fact that Sheehan won 14-10, O’Reilly showed that he is certainly one to watch for the future.
Davie Oliver Joyce also looks to have secured his plane ticket to Baku with a class performance against Holy Trinity’s Mark O’Hara.
The battle for bragging rights in Ballybofey went to Finn Valleys Jason Quigley who beat Twintowns Stephen O’Reilly 23-16 while at 56kg Tyrone McCullagh got the better of Danny Coughlin 8-4 .
Other winners today were Davy Joe Joyce at 81k and Con Sheehan at 91+ while there was no action at 48kg as the only entrant was European and Commonwealth Gold Medallist Paddy Barnes.
Golden Girl Katie Taylor and Drimnagh’s Sinead Kavanagh took their equal share of a dutch pair in today’s ladies contests.
There were no surprises in the fact that Taylor served up another class performance in showing no mercy to B.Willeke on route to a 22-4 points win while Kavanagh wasn’t so lucky when she was out worked by the classier A Nouchka 17.10.
The Irish Team for the World Championships will be announced next week
As we near the conclusion of the Open Elite Box-offs to aid the selection of the Irish team for the upcoming World championships, 17 semi-finals were decided today at the National Stadium over two sessions.
With the main talking point over the last couple of days being the switching up in weight divisions of both Kenny Egan and Con Sheehan, its seems both men went some way towards justifying their actions, with wins over Tommy McCarthy 6-10 and Cathal McMonagle 21-7 respectively.
It seems all plain sailing for Eagan right up until the final few seconds when a sting right uppercut from McCarthy decked the Clondalkin man, returning to his feet Eagan cleared the standing count to survive the scare to win his inaugural heavyweight contest.
But the outstanding fight of the day was between club mates and international colleagues Davie Oliver Joyce and Eric Donovan with the final bell leaving the vocal crowd wishing for more. In a contest that swayed back and forth through-out, Donavon lead by a single point 6-5 at the end of the first. Heading into the final three minutes Joyce had levelled the scores to ten a piece.
Loudly encouraged by a crowd in awe of the effort and commitment of both boxers, they responded with another cracking round to finish the fight they way they had begun, all level at 16-16, but it was the hand of Joyce that was raised, winning on a count-back score of 91-88.
Portlaoise’s Michael O’Reilly continues to show maturity beyond his age with another outstanding performance against this year’s beaten senior finalist Karl Brabazon, beating the St Saviours OBA boxer on a score-line of 26-9.
Roy Sheehan continues to roll back the years after following his defeat yesterday of John Joe Joyce he delivered again with and impressive win over this year’s senior champion Adam Nolan on a score-line of 20-12.
Other winners today to book their place in Saturday’s finals included former European Youth Champion Jason Quigley, European bronze medallist Tyrone McCullagh, Michael Conlan and Ruairi Dalton .
Day two of the unseeded elite competition saw thirteen quarter finals contested over morning and afternoon sessions. Three of today’s contests involved boxers from the same clubs fight it out against each other.
The first of these was at 60kg where Mark O’Hara got the better of fellow Holy Trinity club mate Sean Mc Comb on an impressive score of 13.5. At 69kg Roy Sheehan reversed the decision from the last time he met John Joe Joyce, winning by a margin of 16-10. Sheehan turned around a first round deficit of 3.1 to take a commanding 12.7 lead after the second before forcing Joyce to take a standing count in the third.
The third in-house dust-up was at 75kg where Conrad Cummins gained a revenge win over club mate David Walsh on a score of 17.4.
Irish Senior champion at 69k Adam Nolan dominated in his match against Niall Murray Nolan was so governing that Murray trailed 9.0 after the first round . Showing that he has fully recovered from the injury that kept him out of the European championship Nolan eventually won 21-6.
Young Michael O’Reilly continued delivering on his future potential by beating the very capable Stephen Donnelly 17-15.
Tyrone Mc Cullagh (Holy Family GG) repeated his Senior semi-final victory over Shane Cox (Gorey) with a fine display of rapid punching to win by 22.10.
There were also wins for Eric Donovan and Davie Oliver Joyce who will clash in tomorrow’s semi-finals.
Other winners today were Karl Brabazon, Stephen O’Reilly, Shane Murtagh, former European Youth Champion Jason Quigley and Kenneth Okungbowa.
Semi-finals will take place tomorrow over two sessions at 2pm and 7pm, with the finals on Saturday at 3pm.
The much debated OPEN UNSEEDED ELITE COMPETITION began in earnest tonight at the National Stadium where a large percentage of Irelands top amature combatants will square off hoping to secure a place at the upcoming World Championships.
In what has become one of the hottest subjects in Irish sport over the last couple of days, the IABA are using the Open to assist with their selection process for the 2011 AIBA World Championships and Olympic qualifiers in Baku, Azerbaijan in September/October of this year.
The draw made at the Dublin venue earlier today had notable absentees including European and Commonwealth champion Paddy Barnes, John Joe Nevin, Darren O’Neill as well as European Gold Medal pair Ray Moylette and Joe Ward.
The draw also sees Olympic silver medallist Kenny Egan move up to heavyweight where he will meet Tommy McCarthy in a repeat of the 2009 and 2010 national senior final. Con Sheehan moves up to 91+ where he will box Cathal Mc Monagal.
In tonight’s five bouts, all from the 69 kg pot it was a very mature performance by Michael O’Reilly (Portlaoise) that set the marker for what will hopefully be an exciting weekend at the South Circler Road venue.
In what was his senior competitive debut O Reilly who has won numerous underage national titles showed to much class for Brian Brosnan, outscoring the Crumlin pugilist on a 13.8 score line .
In what turned into a night Crumlin boxing club would rather forget, the Dublin outfit got zero return from their three fighters.
Former Olympian John Joe Joyce opened proceedings beating commonwealth gold medallist Paddy Gallagher (Gleann ) on a margin of 18 to 9. Senior finalist Karl Brabazon (St Saviours OBA) continued winning ways when he came out on top against Martin Wall (Crumlin) 16-9.
Paulie Upton beat Fergal Redmond 13.10, with Stephen Donnelly (All Saints Ballymena) closing the show with a 14.4 win over Graham Hogan (Crumlin).
The Open resumes tomorrow morning with quarter-finals at 11am. The semi-finals and finals will be decided on Friday and Saturday.
Saturday’s finals begin at 3pm.
Photos Provided by Michael Hade