The latest edition of the EUBC European Confederation Junior Continental Championships was recently held in Lviv, Ukraine, where an outstanding tournament saw thirteen boxers earn gold medals.
Athlete of the tournament
Denmark’s Mahdi Hassan Jallaw won gold at the 2014 EUBC European Confederation Schoolboys Continental Championships, before joining the junior age group this January.
Jallaw is one of the most exciting Danish talents to emerge in recent years, and met with Ukraine’s Junior National Champion Ivan Koziar in the final of the Bantamweight (54 kg) class in Lviv.
Although Koziar enjoyed much home support during the match from the crowd, Jallow was unfazed as he won every round by expertly utilising his strength and tactical nous.
This was Denmark’s first gold medal in the history of the Championships, and the historic moment will live long in the memory of Jallow and his coaching team.
Team of the tournament
The Ukrainian squad won four gold medals Lviv, much to the delight of their wonderful fans who supported the boxers throughout the Championships.
Sokolovskiy Junior Memorial Tournament winner Artem Demianenko began the gold rush for Ukraine when he triumphed over Azerbaijan’s Heydar Aliyev Junior Cup bronze medallist Javid Huseynov in the final of the Light Flyweight class (48 kg), while EUBC European Confederation Schoolboys Continental Championships silver medallist Andrii Matiash defeated Romanian Junior National Champion Florin Gabriel Dinu at Flyweight (50 kg).
Aleksey Yukov Junior Tournament winner Ivan Papakin then outpointed Yahor Skaramokh at Light Middleweight (70 kg), before Light Heavyweight (80 kg) Arkadii Kartsan beat Ireland’s James O’Reilly.
Surprises of the tournament
Germany’s Black Forest Junior Cup winner Oronzo Birardi only received the green light to compete in Lviv at the last minute, but it proved to be the right decision as he eliminated Ireland’s Anthony Johnston in the semi-finals, and then outperformed Romania’s Alberto Cristian Biro in the final.
Israel’s Ahmad Shtivi claimed a remarkable bronze medal in the Featherweight class (57 kg), and his tournament began with a magnificent victory over Azerbaijan’s two-time Heydar Aliyev Junior Cup winner Elton Mammadov.
One to watch
Azerbaijan’s Bakhtiyar Kazibeyov arrived to the venue of the event as the main favourite of the Lightweight class (60 kg), and lived up to his sterling reputation by taking home the gold medal following an impressive performance against Turkey’s Tugrulhan Erdemir.
Facts of the tournament
220 boxers from 27 nations competed in Lviv, where Mahdi Hassan Jallaw’s amazing performance resulted in Denmark’s first ever gold in the history of the Championships.
For the first time since 2010 Georgia failed to win a gold medal, while Armenia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Norway, Scotland, Serbia and Wales all claimed at least one bronze medal.
Quote of the tournament
“Mahdi Hassan Jallaw is a technical boxer, but in the final we decided to attack from the first seconds. Ivan Koziar looked very strong in the semi-finals, and we agreed that it would be very difficult to counter-attack against him. Mahdi then achieved a great final performance with successful attacks, and claimed an incredible gold medal,” said Gunnar Berg, the Danish head coach.
List of the winners in Lviv
- 46 kg: Sakhil Alakhverdovi, Georgia
- 48 kg: Artem Demianenko, Ukraine
- 50 kg: Andrii Matiash, Ukraine
- 52 kg: Charles Frankham, England
- 54 kg: Mahdi Hassan Jallaw, Denmark
- 57 kg: Necat Ekinci, Turkey
- 60 kg: Bakhtiyar Kazibeyov, Azerbaijan
- 63 kg: John Johnstone, England
- 66 kg: Jason Harty, Ireland
- 70 kg: Ivan Papakin, Ukraine
- 75 kg: Oronzo Birardi, Germany
- 80 kg: Arkadii Kartsan, Ukraine
- +80 kg: Mahammad Abdullayev, Azerbaijan