The International Boxing Association (AIBA) has named Lithuania’s Eimantas Stanionis as its Boxer of the Month for August. Stanionis won the Welterweight (69 kg) gold medal at the EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria.
“It is amazing to win this award, and I am very happy as I am the first Lithuanian to become Boxer of the Month. Thank you to all my supporters who voted for me,” said Stanionis.
After an AIBA panel created a shortlist of three boxers who had shined in August, a vote was put to AIBA’s social media followers to pick the Boxer of the Month.
Against tough competition from AMBC American Confederation Boxing Championships gold medalists Robson Conceicao (BRA) and Albert Ramirez (VEN), Stanionis was the fans favourite in the vote.
Eimantas Stanionis’ early career
Stanionis began boxing in 2007 at the age of 13, and joined Lithuania’s junior national squad three years later when he won bronze at the EUBC European Confederation Junior Boxing Championships.
He soon progressed to the youth age category, where he reached the quarter-finals of both the 2011 EUBC European Confederation Youth Boxing Championship and the 2012 AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships.
Aged 18, Stanionis won his first elite national title, and followed that accomplishment by winning the 2012 Algirdas Socikas Tournament.
The wider boxing world soon began to take notice of the talented Lithuanian in March 2013, after he defeated Kazakhstan’s star Daniyar Yeleussinov in the preliminary round of the Grand Prix in Usti nad Labem.
He later earned valuable international experience after competing in both the 2013 EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships, and the Almaty 2013 AIBA World Boxing Championships.
2014 proved to be his most successful year yet, as he won the Algirdas Socikas Tournament once again, and claimed silver at the European Union Championships.
AIBA Pro Boxing
Having built up a tremendous reputation in AIBA Open Boxing (AOB) events, Stanionis joined AIBA Pro Boxing (APB) in 2014, where he soon excelled with superb victories over Austria’s Marcos Nader, Hungary’s three-time Olympian Gyula Kate and Azerbaijan’s Tamerlan Abdullayev.
Stanionis entered the 2015 EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships having had to quickly adapt back to the 3 rounds (x3 min) format of AOB after his longer matches in APB.
Seeded number two at Welterweight, Stanionis began his tournament by defeating Hungary’s former EUBC European Champion Balazs Bacskai of Hungary in a tremendously entertaining clash.
Following two further triumphs in the event, he celebrated his 21st birthday in style with an amazing gold medal winning performance against Belarus’ Pavel Kastramin.
An inspired Stanionis dominated the Welterweight final from the opening bell, and his eventual triumph resulted in Lithuania’s first European Championships gold medal since 1993.
Eimantas Stanionis stats and facts
- Date Of Birth : 17/08/1994
- Place Of Birth : Kaunas
- Height : 174cm
- Club : Gaja Kaunas
- Coach : Vidas Bruzas
- Residence : Kaunas
- 2015 – EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships, Gold medal
- 2014 – European Union Championships, Silver
- 2012, 2013, 2014 – Algirdas Socikas Tournament, Gold
- 2012 – AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships, 5th Place
- 2011 – EUBC European Confederation Youth Boxing Championships, 5th Place
- 2010 – EUBC European Confederation Junior Boxing Championships, Bronze medal
Interview with Eimantas Stanionis
Eimantas, when did you start your boxing career?
I began boxing in 2007 at the relatively late age of 13, but I quickly adapted to the technique and movements of the sport.
Could you please describe what boxing means for you?
Boxing means everything for me, I live for boxing.
What is your biggest strength in the ring?
I know how to make my opponent let their hands down, and I punch towards key target areas, and not to the gloves.
How did you feel when competing in the EUBC European Confederation Boxing Championships?
I was really tired because I had fought over 8 rounds in APB, and when I arrived back to Lithuania I had only one day of relaxation before my training camp began in Belarus. There, I had a week in the camp to acclimatize back to the 3 round event. In the tournament, everything was perfect, and I still can’t believe that I won the title, which is my career highlight.
What is it like competing in APB? What are the differences between AOB and APB events?
I am very happy that I was invited to box in APB, as I am the youngest fighter in my weight class. APB means extra experience for me, and all I need is experience to solve hard situations in the ring. It was hard to adapt from 3 rounds up to 8, but it is amazing that we can fight as pro boxers.
What is your next target?
The Rio 2016 Olympic Games. I must qualify for the Games, and I just want to become the best boxer in the world. Finally, I would like to say a big thank you to my coach Vidas Bruzas, and my sponsors.