Italy's 29-year-old European Champion Valeria Calabrese had the experience to defeat Belarusian National Champion Yana Levankova 12:3 in her opening contest at the 8th edition of the European Women's Elite Championships. Calabrese will now meet Turkey's veteran former European Champion Sumeyra Yazici in order to qualify for the Flyweight's Top8 in the Dutch city of Rotterdam which plays host to the event, with 153 boxers all vying for medals.
Norway's National and Nordic Champion Marielle Hansen caused an upset in her opening contest as the 21-year-old triumphed over Hungary's AIBA World Championships quarter-finalist Katalin Ancsin 15:9 to progress.
Turkey's Nagehan Gul, who secured a bronze medal at the last edition of these championships, eliminated Finland's two-time National Champion Marjut Lausti 18:6 in the Featherweight category. Another boxer from Finland, two-time EU Championships bronze medallist Mira Potkonen outboxed Norway's China Open Tournament silver medallist veteran Ingrid Egner to win 12:10 and will now meet Bulgaria's Strandja Memorial Tournament winner Denitsa Eliseeva in the next preliminary round.
Two-time AIBA Women's World Champion Sofya Ochigava, who returned to the ring this year following time out, registered a stunning win against Gabriela Bold with the Romanian's corner throwing in the towel in the first round of the bout. Ochigava can expect a real test in the next stage of the championships when she faces England's rising star, 20-year-old Chantelle Cameron.
Poland's AIBA Women's World Championships bronze medallist Karolina Graczyk also made a successful debut in Rotterdam when she completely overwhelmed Bosnia & Herzegovina's newcomer Olja Zerajic 22:1. In another Lightweight contest, Azerbaijan's Ayzanat Gadzhiyeva eliminated the first Dutch boxer, local hero Jessica Belder, in a very tight contest 11:10.
Three-time AIBA Women's World Champion, living legend Katie Taylor made her bow in the competition as the Irish superstar from Bray was too strong for Germany's National Champion Julia Irmen-Goeldner. Taylor won the contest 15:7 and will now be fighting Italy's Romina Marenda for a place in the last eight.
Finally, Turkey's two-time AIBA World Champion Gulsum Tatar did not make the move down to the Olympic Lightweight class, as she had planned to do before the event so remains the favourite the Light Welterweight division. Tatar stopped Romania's Iulia Novacioiu 25:3 and will now meet Greece's 27-year-old multiple National Champion Christina Athanasopoulou.
One of the big local stars in these championships is Marichelle De Jong who had to battle hard against Azerbaijan's former Russian National Champion Yelena Vystropova. Their contest resulted in a close victory for De Jong who will now face her top rival, Russia's Irina Poteyeva for a medal. The Russian eliminated Czech Republic's Martina Jindrova in her Welterweight contest.
In the third Olympic weight category, in the Middleweight division, 17 boxers were entered so two had to compete to secure a place in the last 16 and it was Ireland's Sinead Kavanagh who triumphed over Belarus' two-time National Champion Viktoriya Kebikova 18:7 to take that spot.
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