Sunday 26 January 2020

Ireland's Michael Conlan matched with Armenian opponent for last 16 bantamweight bout

Michael Conlan. Photo: Sportsfile
Michael Conlan. Photo: Sportsfile

Tom Rooney

Michael Conlan has learned the identity of his first opponent at the Rio Games as the Belfast bantamweight seeks to add to the bronze medal he won in London four years ago.

Conlan was granted a bye to the last 16 of his division in last week’s draw, and today it was confirmed that he will meet Armenia’s Aram Avagyan on Sunday.

The 24-year-old is hotly tipped to be standing high on the podium come the end of business in Rio, having won both the World and European Amateur Championships  last year.

At the London games, while still a flyweight, Conlan won bronze but it is thought he will better that landmark achievement in the coming weeks.

Avagyan, 25, failed to qualify for the London games and, on paper, would appear no match for a fighter of Conlan’s of ability.

With Paddy Barnes and David Oliver Joyce eliminated from the tournament, Conlan will surely be seeking to change the narrative surrounding Irish boxing at present.

Tonight at 11.15, light-heavyweight Joe Ward meets Carlos Mina.

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