Medal hope O'reilly comes up short in Russia

Published 09/10/2012 | 12:40

Senator Darragh O'Brien pictured last week during a visit to Bracken Boxing Club, with (l to r) Chloe Gray, Shane Egan, Conor Duffy and Gerard Whitehouse who will be fighting in their home town on Friday next.

CHRISTOPHER O'Reilly's bid to emulate Bracken clubmate Gerard Whitehouse and win a European medal bit the dust when he was beaten in the quarter-finals in Russia last Wednesday.

The 14-year-old from Balbriggan arrived in Anapa in a confident frame of mind, and duly won his opening bout on Tuesday against a Moldovan opponent on a comprehensive 13-3 scoreline. Christopher was back in action the following day against an Armenian, with a guaranteed medal at stake for both boxers, but this time the Bracken ace came out on the wrong end of a 7-5 scoreline and tasted a rare and disappointing defeat. Coach Kieran O'Neill was philosophical about the result and insisted that Christopher would come back stronger in the future. 'He weighed in at 60.2kg which meant he'd lost 4lb from going out there and was nearly in the next [lowest] weight division, and that concerned me because he's not weighed that low for a long time. The food wasn't agreeing with him. 'It's very seldom he scores that low and there's a lot of factors that come into play. It was a tight battle which could have gone either way, but the dream ended and Christopher appeared to under-perform and will be greatly disappointed. 'There's no excuses. We were beaten and good luck to the Armenian, but we're still very proud of Christy's achievements. 'I thought he was good enough to get the gold, but he's only 14, it was his first major international and you can't expect too much. He has to get used to being away and not being with his own coach. It's a massive learning curve.' Meanwhile, tickets are still available for Bracken's show this Friday night, when they host a French selection in the Milestone Inn, with the first bout at 7.30pm. O'Reilly won't be in action as he rests following his European exploits, but the card will still include Whitehouse, Conor Duffy, Shane Egan and Chloe Gray. The tickets are priced at €10 and available from club secretary Brendan Purtill at 0860576591.

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