The EUBC European Junior Continental Championships in Anapa, Russia have now finished, and the host nation claimed nine gold medals, topping the team rankings once again on home soil.
Elsewhere, Azerbaijan, Ireland, Italy and Scotland also bagged a gold medal, where the finals delivered spectacular battles for the local boxing fans.
Bout of the day
Italy’s new sensation Damiano Cordella trains in the club of Beboxe-Copertino, and comes from a true boxing family, as his twin brother Nicola is also member of the national junior team.
Damiano eliminated Turkey’s Junior National Champion strong hope Ahmet Otcu in the semi-final of the championships, and advanced to the final where his opponent was Ireland’s Aaron McKenna, who claimed a gold medal at the 2013 EUBC European Schoolboys Championships in Dublin.
The Italian Flyweight class (50 kg) boxer tried to use his agility against his talented 15-year-old opponent in the opening round, and Cordella, who began his boxing career only in 2011 and had 16 bouts prior the championships, provided the better boxing throughout the engrossing bout.
McKenna did not give up the battle, and turned up the heat, but his efforts were not enough to turn back the contest.
The Irish boxer will have a great chance to get a top result in the 2015 AIBA Junior World Championships which to be scheduled in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Team of the day
The host nation of the EUBC European Junior Continental Championships secured nine out of the possible thirteen gold medals, and exceeded their performance in comparison to the last five editions of the tournament.
Nikita Piskunov opened the gold rish at the Light Flyweight class (48 kg) against Hungary’s Junior National Champion Gabor Virban.
Albert Rodionov had an early final in the last four of the Light Bantamweight class (52 kg), against Hungary’s Istvan Szaka, and continued the winning path in the final against Italy’s 15-year-old Matteo Pirrera, who had only one loss previously during his career.
His strong teammate, two-time Junior National Champion Vladimir Strygin spent only a short time in the ring against Moldova’s Alexandru Paraschiv before the referee stopped the final bout of the Bantamweight class (54 kg).
Anatoliy Zhirnov claimed a silver medal at the Heydar Aliyev Junior Cup in Baku where he was defeated by Turkmenistan’s Muhammed Berdibayev, but he was able to go one better in Anapa.
The 16-year-old Featherweight class (57 kg) hope was too smart for Azerbaijan’s Bahtiyar Kazibeyov, and bagged Russia’s fourth gold medal in the EUBC European Junior Continental Championships.
EUBC European Schoolboys Champion Magomed-Rasul Barkayev defeated Turkey’s lone finalist Batuhan Aydogan, winning the bout by split decision, and his tough teammate, EUBC European Schoolboys Champion Issa Yevloyev controlled his final against Germany’s EUBC European Schoolboys Championships silver medallist 16-year-old Artur Mamberger at the Light Welterweight class (63 kg).
Valid Kakayev delivered Russia’s seventh gold medal in Anapa following his close contest against Romania’s Hungarian-descent Alberto Biro, and at the Light Heavyweight class (80 kg), Russian Junior National Championships silver medallist Timerkhan Almakayev won the final bout beating Hungary’s Roland Erdelyi by unanimous decision.
The final Russian gold medal was achieved by Vladislav Muravin who shocked Yakov Visotskiy Junior Memorial Tournament winner, and the favourite of the Heavyweight class (+80 kg) Vyacheslav Gavrilyuk in the last bout of the event.
Surprise of the day
Scotland’s British Junior Champion William Hutchinson arrived to the venue of the EUBC European Junior Continental Championships as a medal contender, and he was able to achieve the highest possible result in Anapa.
The 16-year-old Light Middleweight class (70 kg) boxer attacked more than Russia’s EUBC European Schoolboys Champion 15-year-old Artem Oganesyan in their final, and more than deserved his gold medal, capping off a great couple of months for Scottish boxing.
One to watch
Ireland’s Michael Nevin has claimed gold medals at various national level events, and the 16-year-old boxer eliminated Israel’s lone medallist in Anapa, Ofek Klugman in the semi-final, before achieving a career best performance in the final of the Welterweight class (66 kg) against Russia’s Aleksey Semyikin.
Stat/Fact of the day
Besides Russia’s nine gold medals, Azerbaijan, Ireland, Italy and Scotland also won a weight class in Anapa.
Ukraine had six medallists, but none of their boxers were able to reach the top of the podium in Anapa.
Hungary had two finalists in the competition, while Germany, Romania and Turkey also demonstrated the power of their future hopes.
England secured only two bronze medals in the championships, and their top athlete Ryan Garner was eliminated by an Azeri boxer in the preliminary stages, which was one of the biggest surprises of the entire competition.
List of the winners in Anapa
46 kg: Ruslan Rustamov, Azerbaijan
48 kg: Nikita Piskunov, Russia
50 kg: Damiano Cordella, Italy
52 kg: Albert Rodionov, Russia
54 kg: Vladimir Strygin, Russia
57 kg: Anatoliy Zhirnov, Russia
60 kg: Magomed-Rasul Barkayev, Russia
63 kg: Issa Yevloyev, Russia
66 kg: Michael Nevin, Ireland
70 kg: William Hutchinson, Scotland
75 kg: Valid Kakayev, Russia
80 kg: Timerkhan Almakayev, Russia
+80 kg: Vladislav Muravin, Russia