Wednesday 22 November 2017

In Brief: Olympic stars in Elite Irish squad

LONDON 2012 medallists and Olympians John Joe Nevin, Paddy Barnes, Michael Conlan and Adam Nolan have been named in a 10-strong Irish Elite squad for a training camp in Kazakhstan, writes Bernard O'Neill.

Current European champion Joe Ward and Ray Moylette have also been called into the panel, which departs for the 12-day camp in Astana on Wednesday.

Ireland, who finished in second spot in the medals tables at the last two European Championships in Russia and Turkey, are preparing for the upcoming European Senior Men's Championships in Belarus in June.

Meanwhile, Eric Donovan's Astana Arlans beat the Argentina Condors in Almaty, Kazakhstan to book their tickets into the World Series of Boxing semi-finals.

Donovan didn't take part in yesterday's quarter-final because of injury.

The Arlans will now meet either Joe Ward's or John Joe Nevin's British Lionhearts or Conrad Cummings' Mexico Guerreros in the last-four.

The Guerrerors and Lionhearts, who were 4-1 up from the first leg, met in Mexico City in the early hours of this morning.

details in factfile

HOCKEY

Two opportunist strikes from former international Mark Raphael could not rescue Lisnagarvey from defeat in the elite EuroHockey League in Amsterdam.

The Irish champions were eliminated by Belgian side Antwerp Dragons on a 7-2 scoreline.

Some vintage striking from Raphael kept the Ulster side in contention up to the break, when they trailed 3-2.

However, without late withdrawal Timmy Cockram, they looked a jaded side thereafter, conceding four without reply.

At least Garvey had the satisfaction of holding retired Irish player Stephen Butler, now resident in Belgium, scoreless.

Instead the main damage was done by Loick Luypaert who claimed four of the seven, three from corners and one from the penalty spot.

RUGBY

Scotland star Greig Laidlaw booted Edinburgh to a 9-7 victory over Zebre in Parma – but it could easily have been a miserable night for the visitors.

With time running out at the Stadio XXV Aprile, Zebre fly-half Luciano Orquera hit the crossbar with a drop-goal attempt. If the ball had landed on the right side, it would have been a near-certain match-winner.

Zebre remain without a victory in the Pro12, but this was a night when they went particularly close, scoring the game's only try when Dries van Schalkwyk crossed in the first half, to give them a 7-3 lead.

Edinburgh cut the gap to a single point at the break and Laidlaw kicked his third penalty of the encounter five minutes into the second half.

That gave the Scottish side a lead they just managed to cling onto.

Irish Independent

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