Saturday 21 October 2017

Olympic medallist Nevin to join professional ranks

John Joe Nevin with his Olympic silver medal
John Joe Nevin with his Olympic silver medal

Vincent Hogan BOXING

Olympic boxing silver medallist John Joe Nevin is to turn professional.

The Mullingar bantamweight will announce the decision tonight, ending speculation that he might seek the unique distinction of competing at a third Olympiad in Rio de Janeiro four years from now.

Nevin (right), a 23-year-old settled Traveller, has been in big demand since his August heroics at the ExCel Arena in London, particularly the spectacular demolition of Cuban world champion Lazaro Alvarez Estrada that secured his place in the Olympic final.

He also represented Ireland at the Beijing Games, while still a teenager.

Extensive efforts were made to keep him on the amateur High Performance programme, funded by the Irish Sports Council, but they have proved unsuccessful.

Hopes remain high, however, that gold medallist Katie Taylor will reject the lure of the professional ranks and commit to defending her Olympic lightweight title at Rio 2016.

Just this week, the remarkable Bray boxer described the London Games "as the best two weeks of my life," and indicated a desire to reach fresh agreement with the Sports Council.

Irish Independent

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