Ireland’s Dearbhla Tinnelly wins gold at the European Youth Championships


Dearbhla Tinnelly is Ireland’s newest European boxing champion.

he light heavyweight Dundalk outclassed Karine Airapetian of Ukraine to claim gold this afternoon at the European Youth Championships (U-18) in Sofia.

A member of Dundalk-based boxing club Clann Naofa, she previously won a European silver medal at U-14 level in 2018 and a silver medal at junior level (U-16) three years ago.

In her third fight at the championships, Tinnelly dominated against the Ukrainian. From her left-handed stance, she controlled the first two rounds to build an unassailable lead on points.

Both had a point docked in the last lap as Airapetian desperately tried to save the competition.

But the extent of Tinnelly’s dominance was reflected in the judges’ scorecards. Four of the ringside officials scored the fight 29-26 in their favor while a judge let them win by a four point margin, 29-25.

This was the first time that Ireland had female boxers compete in the heavier weight divisions at this level, but unfortunately the heaviest weight division for women at the Olympic level is 75kg.

Unfortunately, there was no joy for Mayo’s light middleweight division Laura Moran, who lost 3-2 to defending champion Veronika Nakota of Ukraine. However, Moran takes home a silver medal.

Moran got off to a dream start in her fight for the gold medal, winning the first round 4-1. But Nakota won the second round on all five judges’ cards, and she also did enough in the final stanza to go home by just the tiniest margin.

The Ukrainian is an outstanding prospect; This was her third European gold medal win, so Moran, a member of St Anne’s Boxing Club, can be pleased to have led her by a narrow margin.

In tonight’s session at Sofia Hall, Ireland’s co-captain Bobbi Flood (Cabra) meets Italy’s Gabriele Rontani Guidi in the light middleweight final, while Cliona D’Arcy (Tobar Pheadair) boxes against Ukraine’s Polina Cherenko in the women’s super heavyweight final.

Regardless of their results, Ireland are assured of eight medals, with Patsy Joyce (Olympic), Georgia Dunn McGovern (Setanta), Winnie McDonagh (Neilstown) 63kg and Katie O’Keeffe (Kanturk) taking home bronze medals. Ireland’s Dearbhla Tinnelly wins gold at the European Youth Championships

Fry Electronics Team

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