Friday 15 December 2017

McClean for boxing post

John Greene

John Greene

The Irish Amateur Boxing Association will this week confirm the appointment of Billy McClean as its new national junior coach, filling the position left vacant by the departure of Jim Moore.

McClean, from the Holy Trinity club in Belfast, has a wealth of experience. His most recent international involvement was as coach to the 15-strong schoolboy squad which brought three bronze medals from the European Championships in Bulgaria last summer. He is a highly respected figure in the sport.

McClean now steps into a key role in Irish boxing. Of course, he also has pretty big shoes to fill. Moore was a remarkable success during his time overseeing Ireland's junior boxers. Ryan Burnett won a gold medal at the Youth Olympics in Singapore last August -- it was the 15th medal won by one of Moore's fighters in the five years he spent in the High Performance unit.

And in moving to replace Moore, however, it appears that the IABA and the Irish Sports Council -- whose funding is vital to boxing's high performance programme -- weren't always singing off the same hymnsheet. There were tensions between the two bodies, in fact, over the interview process but a series of meetings resolved these difficulties and paved the way for McClean's appointment.

The track record over the last decade or so in Irish boxing has been good and McClean will be aiming to continue that trend.

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