Monday 11 December 2017

Katie Taylor wins the first of five bouts to book Olympics place

Katie Taylor. Photo: Reuters
Katie Taylor. Photo: Reuters reporters

KATIE TAYLOR got through to the last 16 in the first of five bouts in China to claim her fourth AIBA World lightweight title in-a-row.

The Bray woman opened her campaign at the seventh AIBA World Women's Championships and Olympic qualifiers in Qinhuangdao, with a last-32 clash against Tunisia's Rim Jouini at 7am today which she won 19-6.

Jouini, a bronze medal winner at featherweight at the 2010 World Championships in Barbados, beat Portugal's Juliana da Rocha Canedo yesterday to meet Taylor, who was seeded No 1 in the draw.

Russia's Sofya Ochigava, Turkey's Gulsum Tatar and China's Cheng Dong, who are seen as the biggest threats to Taylor, came out in the other half of the lightweight draw.

The championships are acting as the only Olympic qualifier for female boxers in the flyweight, lightweight and middleweight classes.

Three Olympics places are available for Europe in each of those three weight categories at the Olympic Stadium in Qinhuangdao.

Taylor's coach and dad, Peter, who is working Ireland's corner along with Zuar Antia in China, said: "The squad are taking it one fight at a time.

There's no point in looking too far ahead at these tournaments."

More than 300 boxers from 77 nations have entered the Championships, breaking all records for entries from the last six AIBA World Women's Championships.

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