Heroes' welcome for European medallists
Published 30/06/2015 | 02:30
She has just added another European gold medal to her impressive collection, but world boxing champion Katie Taylor says she isn't feeling under pressure to maintain her winning streak.
The Olympic gold winner (28) arrived home with the rest of the Irish team, including fellow gold medallist Michael O'Reilly (22), from the European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan yesterday.
"I think the pressure is always great in every big competition - everyone always expects you to go home with a gold medal," Katie said.
"But I enjoy that pressure and if I prepare well for these competitions I always have great belief in myself."
The Bray native has her sights firmly set on winning more medals.
"I want to go down as one of the greatest in the world, and I definitely think I'm on the right path," she added.
Katie and the rest of the athletes were treated to a heroes' welcome at Dublin Airport by crowds of fans.
And she said inspiring young girls to follow in her footsteps is the "most satisfying part" of being a high-profile athlete.
"It's great to have an influence on some of these young girls coming up and it's great to see all the boxing clubs around the country that have female boxing," she said.
Katie signed autographs for two such girls, Ellie Maher (10) and Sophie Clancy (12) from St Joseph's boxing club, in Edenderry, Co Offaly.
Although the boxer was not at her best following a recent wrist injury, she still proved a cut above her competition to win the inaugural lightweight gold to her Olympic crown and five world championship titles. Meanwhile Michael made it double gold for Ireland when he beat local Xaybula Musalov to claim the middleweight title in Baku.