Three NI boxers secure bronze medals

Three NI boxers secure bronze medals

Three of Northern Ireland's boxers have secured at least bronze at the Commonwealth Games, following quarter-final victories.

Joe Fitzpatrick, Sean Duffy and Sean McGlinchy all won their fights in Glasgow on Tuesday evening to reach the semi-finals.

It means they are all guaranteed to come home with medals.

Belfast boxer Fitzpatrick started the run of success as he took on Nicholas Okongo Okoth of Kenya in the lightweight division.

The 19-year-old won on a unanimous decision, but sustained a bad cut under his left eye following a clash of heads in the final round.

He goes on face Michael Alexander of Trinidad and Tobago on Friday in the final four.

Fitzpatrick said: "There's loads of pressure lifted off me now, it feels brilliant to be guaranteed at least a bronze medal but it's a gold I want, I want the number one.

"I'll get a training session done tomorrow and then I'm fighting again on Friday."

He added: "The cuts ok, it's not too bad."

The atmosphere on the boxing team is brilliant.

Joe Fitzpatrick

Craigavon light welter Sean Duffy was in action next as he upset Khir Akyazlan Azmi of Malaysia with a unanimous win to progress to the semi-finals.

"I'm delighted with my performance. I came here as the complete underdog, nobody had really heard of me. As a boxing team we came here to make a statement and I believe we've done that tonight," said Duffy.

"Throughout our training we have said there's no such thing as bronze, it's gold and only gold we're after. I don't so much relax after a fight but I try to put it behind me and think ahead."

Sean McGlinchy of Londonderry then beat Elly Ajowi Ochola of Kenya in their light heavyweight fight to secure three bronze medals for Team NI.

He said: "That's three medals for us now at least, it's fantastic. Hopefully another five or six still to come through. The pressure isn't off though, we are here to go to the top of the podium.

"I'm keeping my head focused for the next fight. It's hard to stay focused because you can nearly see the finish line but it's how hard you want it and I want it so much. I've a young son and I want to give him the best life I can. This medal is for him but I want to make it better for him."

Earlier there was disappointment for Belfast boxer Ruairi Dalton after he was beaten in the men's fly 52kg quarter-finals.

The 24-year-old lost all three rounds to Andrew Moloney of Australia on Tuesday afternoon.

Dalton went into the fight knowing victory would guarantee him a medal, however he had tough opposition in the form Moloney, who had lost narrowly to Paddy Barnes at Delhi in 2010.

The Holy Trinity boxer battled hard throughout the contest and withstood concerted pressure from his opponent, but was already up against it after round one and trailed by all three judges.

Moloney maintained his lead in round two but the Belfast man was making a real battle of it and things were still in the balance going into the final round, which saw Dalton improve.

However it wasn't to be and the local man lost on a unanimous verdict to end his medal hopes.


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