Ireland, which at Elite level recently joined the cream of the crop, sends a strong squad to Bulgaria on the occasion of the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships. And they will try to bring home at least one gold medal.
What: AIBA Youth World Championships
Where: Sofia, Bulgaria
When: 11-24 April, 2014
The Tension and the Drama
There are a lot of top quality boxers in the travelling Irish team who already reached top results in the international level. Ireland claimed high number of medals in the youth level in the recent years therefore the expectations are not the same than ten years ago. Might be a new face in the team also can proves his/her best ever performance therefore the biggest question can Ireland continue its excellent golden series in Sofia?
Ones to watch
St. Davids Nass boxer Gary Cully began his career at the age of 7 and following his junior career he won the gold medal at the EUBC European Youth Championships in Rotterdam last August. He had a short Spanish holiday after the continental title and since then he has been prepared only to the Sofia event where he will debut in his new category at the Bantamweight class (56 kg).
Ireland’s current youth Flyweight class (52 kg) No.1 William Donoghue is the current AIBA Junior World Champion and joined to this age group on January. He will be turning to 17 only on September but his expectations are also high in Sofia in spite of his unsuccessful debut in this age group at the Pavlyukov Youth Memorial Tournament in Russia.
Ireland’s new sensation could be St. Pauls’ Brendan Irvine who not only won the Pavlyukov Youth Memorial Tournament in Anapa in February but he defeated the top Cuban youth Light Flyweight class (49 kg) athletes including AIBA Junior World Champion Joahnys Oscar Argilagos Perez and awarded the best boxer trophy of the tournament. His skills are enough to be realized Ireland’s golden targets in Sofia.
Ireland’s next female star Ciary Ginty won the gold at the 2013 AIBA Women’s Junior World Championships in Albena and awarded the Best Women Junior Boxer Trophy of the Year 2013. She is also fighting at the Lightweight class (60 kg) as their national female boxing icon Katie Taylor. Ireland’s another female hope will be Christine Desmond who was silver medallist at the 2013 AIBA Women’s Youth World Championships in Albena.
Fact of the tournament
Former European Schoolboys Champion John Joyce defeated Caoimhin Hynes by split decision in a special box-off for a place at the Welterweight class (69 kg) at Dublin’s National Stadium last month which means the Irish team has been completed. Besides to the maximum number of three female boxers nine male athletes will be there in Sofia only the Super Heavyweight class (+91 kg) will not see any Irish competitors.
Ireland’s history in the event
Ireland could not win any medal at the 2006 AIBA Junior World Championships in Agadir, Morocco but since then when AIBA changed the name of the age group to youth their athletes reached top performance in the last three editions. Raymond Moylette won the Lightweight class (60 kg) in Guadalajara in 2008 while Joseph Ward was crowned in the 2010 AIBA Youth World Championships in Baku. In the last edition Kurt Walker was the most successful Irish youth boxer in Yerevan winning a bronze in Armenia.