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Ireland's Jason Quigley

Ireland's Jason Quigley

SPORTSFILE

Ireland's Jason Quigley

THE fight is on to keep world No 2-ranked middleweight Jason Quigley on the road to the Rio Olympics and out of the pro ranks.

Quigley was made an offer to sign for AIBA Professional Boxing (APB), which will be launched later this year. An APB chief talked to Quigley's coach and dad, Conor, last week.

London 2012 bronze medallists Michael Conlan and Paddy Barnes and World bronze medallist Joe Ward are also being chased to sign up.

Quigley didn't register to defend his middleweight title at the National Elite Championships, which began at the National Stadium last Friday.

The move has fuelled speculation that the 22-year-old Donegal fighter is about to turn professional. But if he does sign pro he won't be allowed to compete at the Rio 2016 Games as pro boxers not under the auspices of AIBA are banned from the Olympics.

However, if he signs for APB he will still be able to fight for Ireland – if he qualifies – in Rio.

Meanwhile, Barnes will be in action in Friday's National Elite semi-finals at the National Stadium.

The men's and women's semi-finals will be decided on Friday and Saturday night.

Susie Wolff will this season become the first woman in 22 years to compete in a Formula One event.

Wolff will take part in first practice before the British and German Grands Prix as part of her expanded development driver role with Williams.

The 31-year-old Scot has played an integral part in the development of the last three Williams cars, including the FW36 that will take to the track in Melbourne for the Australian GP in less than three weeks' time. Not since Giovanna Amati, who failed to qualify in the 1992 Brazilian GP at Interlagos for Brabham, has a woman taken part in an F1 event.

Wolff said: "The plan just now is for the British GP and the German GP."

The news of Wolff's F1 drive comes just 10 days after Sauber announced Simona De Silvestro would become an affiliated driver with the team, working her way towards gaining the necessary superlicence to compete.

Irish Independent