The boxing competition of the Baku 2015 European Games has now finished in Azerbaijan, where the final five champions were crowned at the Crystal Hall 2 venue.
All five contests displayed entertaining action, and the Prime Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Mr. Ilham Aliyev also visited on the last day of the boxing tournament.
Bout of the day
Ireland’s Katie Taylor is the current Olympic Champion, AIBA Women’s World Champion, EUBC European Women’s Continental Champion and European Union Champion, and she can now add European Games Champion to her glittering resume.
The 28-year-old Irish boxer had a height disadvantage in the final of the Women’s Lightweight class (60 kg) against France’s AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Estelle Mossely, but she used her speed to great effect against the young French athlete.
Round one was a cagey affair as both boxers attempted to seek out the weaknesses of the other, before Taylor’s movement and work rate began to make their mark from the beginning of the second frame.
Taylor’s footwork and uppercuts was the key difference in the contest, and the Irish superstar won the world class bout by unanimous decision to secure her Baku 2015 European Games gold.
Gold medallists on Day 12
- Women’s 60 kg: Katie Taylor, Ireland
- Men’s 60 kg: Albert Selimov, Azerbaijan
- Men’s 69 kg: Parviz Baghirov, Azerbaijan
- Men’s 75 kg: Michael O’Reilly, Ireland
- Men’s 91 kg: Abdulkadir Abdullayev, Azerbaijan
Team of the day
Azerbaijan had four finalists on the last day of the Baku 2015 European Games, and three of those were able to win gold on home soil.
2007 AIBA World Boxing Champion Azerbaijan’s Albert Selimov was been one of the best boxers in Season V of the World Series of Boxing, and clinched gold in Baku after outpointing France’s Sofiane Oumiha in their Lightweight class (60 kg) final.
Selimov put on a boxing clinic throughout every round, and was particularly impressive in the last three minutes of the match.
Azerbaijan’s second winner on the last competition day was EUBC European Youth Continental Champion Parviz Baghirov, who defeated Russia’s Alexander Besputin.
The 21-year-old Baghirov was aggressive in the opening round, and frequently used quick attacks with great regularity.
Baghirov controlled the second round as well, which allowed him eventually prevail in the Welterweight (69 kg) final.
Azerbaijan’s third gold medal was achieved by Heavyweight (91 kg) Abdulkadir Abdullayev, who walked over to his gold medal as his Ukrainian opponent Gevorg Manukian was unable to compete in their final.
One to watch
Ireland’s European Union Championships silver medallist Michael O’Reilly produced an excellent performance in the Middleweight (75 kg) final against Azerbaijan’s Xaybula Musalov.
O’Reilly was fresher than his Azeri opponent, and his uppercuts offered more success in the first round than Musalov’s jabs.
The 22-year-old Irish boxer and Musalov both continued to work hard throughout the bout, but the final quality was with O’Reilly, whose dangerous hooks and strong movement allowed him to achieve Ireland’s second gold medal in the boxing tournament of the Baku 2015 European Games.
Quote of the day
“Thank God for another great victory. I felt a bit tired after yesterday’s bout, but I managed to pull through. I had to be very clever in there as my French opponent is a very tricky boxer but I think I won every round. I am just delighted with the tactics, I think they were spot on as per usual from my dad. I am so lucky to have some of the best coaches in the world in my corner, and the tactics for every single fight were spot on, and that is the difference a lot of the time, between winning and losing. I am going to take couple of weeks off now, but my main goal of course is to defend that Olympic title. I want to go down in the history books as the greatest women’s boxer of all time,” said Ireland’s London 2012 Olympic Champion Katie Taylor after claiming her 18th gold medal in a major event.