Saturday 25 November 2017

Walsh's value underlined by Smith victory

Ireland head coach Billy Walsh
Ireland head coach Billy Walsh Newsdesk Newsdesk

Billy Walsh's worth as a coach was further underlined when Ceire Smith beat America's Marlen Esparza in the Feliks Stamm Memorial Tournament in Warsaw yesterday.

Esparza - the world flyweight champion and a bronze medallist at the London Olympics - was hot favourite to beat the Irish representative.

But Smith, who boxes out of the Cavan club, sensationally, won on a split decision, which will only further enhance Walsh's reputation with USA Boxing, who want him to take over their women's team ahead of the World Championships in Kazakhstan next year.

In Russia, Eamer Coughlan, Limerick's Paddy Donovan and Dublin's Paul Ryan - all southpaws - guaranteed Ireland at least three bronze medals at the AIBA World Junior Championships yesterday.

Coughlan stopped Pasquale Di Sivo in the third round and Donovan and Ryan earned unanimous decisions in St Petersburg.

Coughlan forced his Italian opponent into three standing counts in his quarter-final win. Tommy Hyde and Sean Purcell bowed out at the last-eight stage.

Today is a rest day. The semi-finals and finals will be held tomorrow and Saturday.

Irish Independent

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