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Going for gold ... but Katie is guaranteed bronze medal

KATIE Taylor is getting closer and closer to nabbing her third World Championship title.

The Bray boxer has earned at least a bronze medal at the Women's World Championships in Barbados after her latest win yesterday against her 17-year-old Russian opponent.

And the 23-year-old has now secured a place in the semi-final of the 60kg light-welterweight class -- and is gearing up for her potential third consecutive world champion title.

Katie, who shies away from the social scene here in order to focus on her training, will see all her hard work pay off if she nabs the gold this weekend.

Although she may be just 23,y she is already one of Ireland's most internationally renowned athletic exports having been named a four-time European champion, a three-time European Union champion and a two-time World champion.

Her proud father and coach Peter spoke proudly of his high-achieving daughter, saying: "What other Irish athlete has ever achieved that?"

But it won't be an easy feat for her this weekend.


Today will be her only day of rest ahead of tomorrow's crucial semi-final match against Queen Underwood of the USA, an opponent she beat 30-3 last year.

And if her performance the previous week is anything to go by, Katie is a shoo-in for the finals on Saturday.

The champion boxer, who is also an Irish soccer international, said that she thrives under the challenge she faces in the ring.

"The pressure of having to perform helps me to box better," she said.

"There is pressure on me to win in every bout, but I've learnt to deal with it and I don't let it get to me as I just concentrate on my performance," she said.

There have been several Irish supporters present as Katie went to battle in the ring over the last number of days -- and the father-daughter team were delighted to see some homegrown support.

"There were lots of Irish at the fight and they really made themselves heard. I don't know where they came from but their support was a great boost," Mr Taylor said.

Prior to jetting off to Barbados, she said that her main goal was to win the gold once again.

"Winning three World titles in a row is my ambition and I'm confident that if I box to my full potential out there that I can do just that," she said.