Elbow injury forces Ward to withdraw
Three-time European champion Joe Ward has pulled out of the National Elite Championships which began at the National Stadium last night.
Ward, who will be the only Irish male boxer to be seeded at September's World Championships and Olympic qualifiers in Russia, had an MRI scan on his left elbow and results revealed that he had torn ligaments.
"It's very disappointing to miss the championships because of injury," said the two-time World Elite finalist.
"I was hoping to win my sixth Irish belt. The important thing now is to give the injury time to heal."
Christian Cekiso, James McGivern, Gerard Matthews, Ken Doyle and Limerick feather Tommy Casey, who beat 2014 finalist Adam Courtney despite misplacing his gumshield, won on the opening night of the tournament.
World Elite champion Kellie Harrington will claim the 60kg belt on a walkover as no opponent entered to challenge the World No 1 lightweight.
Defending welterweight champion Kieran Molloy is in action today while Michael Nevin will put his middleweight crown on the line when he takes on fellow 2016 World Youth medallist Gabriel Dossen.