The Balkan Women’s Tournament delivered a raft of world-class boxing in the beautiful capital city of Bulgaria, Sofia, where 20 Junior, Youth and Elite champions were crowned during six days of competition.

It was the first time the country had hosted the tournament, welcoming top boxers from across five continents. Four different Confederations returned with new champions.

Among the top European boxing nations involved were England, France, Italy, Ukraine and hosts Bulgaria, while Thailand, Vietnam and Japan also sent teams from Asia. North Africa’s boxing powerhouses Morocco and Algeria were also represented in Sofia.

Bulgaria’s AIBA Women’s World Champion Stanimira Petrova had moved down to the flyweight class in pursuit of a place at Rio 2016, eventually setting up a bout against her namesake, the experienced EUBC European Women’s Champion Stoyka Petrova. Having only taken up the sport three years ago, Stanmira edged a thrilling contest to take the title.

“I’m very happy to win the Balkan Women’s Tournament, where all of the boxers were at the highest level. I felt strong and confident in my new weight class after the four battles I had here, and its great that I could beat Stoyka Petrova, who is more experienced than me,” said Stanimira Petrova after her final.

Italy’s Valeria Calabrese, Canada’s Alison Greey and Australia’s Bianca Elmir also provided some top-quality boxing in the non-Olympic weight classes.

“I wasn’t 100% fit going into this tournament, which was really hard for me,” said Italy’s new light flyweight champion Calabrese. “There were no easy matches in the event and in my final I had to box against Algeria’s Souhila Bouchene. I know that she prefers to be close in, so I worked more on keeping mobile. But my toughest opponent was Japan’s Madoka Wada in the quarter-final.”

In the youth tournament, defending AIBA Women’s Youth World Champion Irma Testa was highly impressive in her lightweight final against England’s Shona Whitwell, while Chinese Taipei’s Huang Hsiao Wen and Japan’s Tsukimi Namiki both put in eye-catching performances to take gold.


Full list of winners at the 2015 Balkan Women’s Tournament in Sofia

 Junior 48 kg: Emi-Mari Todorova, Bulgaria

 Junior 50 kg: Chiranchaya Phunsang, Thailand

 Junior 52 kg: Bunyanut Machai, Thailand

 Junior 54 kg: Preedakamon Tintabthai, Thailand

 Junior 60 kg: Donjeta Sadiku, Kosovo

 Junior 70 kg: Asilkhan Mehmedova, Bulgaria

 Youth 48 kg: Nguyen Thi Huyen Phuong, Vietnam

 Youth 51 kg: Tsukimi Namiki, Japan

 Youth 54 kg: Huang Hsiao Wen, Chinese Taipei

 Youth 57 kg: Chutharat Pralathai, Thailand

 Youth 60 kg: Irma Testa, Italy

 Elite 48 kg: Valeria Calabrese, Italy

 Elite 51 kg: Stanimira Petrova, Bulgaria

 Elite 54 kg: Diletta Cipollone, Italy

 Elite 57 kg: Bianca Elmir, Australia

 Elite 60 kg: Svetlana Kamenova Staneva, Bulgaria

 Elite 64 kg: Nila Lipska, Ukraine

 Elite 69 kg: Elena Vystropova, Azerbaijan

 Elite 75 kg: Anna Laurell Nash, Sweden

 Elite 81 kg: Alison Greey, Canada