James Cleary and Willie Donoghue lost out in their bids to reach the semi-finals-finals of the European Youth Championships in Zagreb, Croatia on Wednesday evening.
Cleary can consider himself very unfortunate to have been on the wrong end of a split decision to Russia’s Maxim Krivisov.
The Galway lightweight clearly won the final two rounds following a very close opening frame. Most of the second was also close, but Cleary turned his tough opponent back into the Irish corner near the end of the round and delivered some big shots off both hands to claim the stanza.
The Olympic BC ace also found the target with five unanswered shots in the third, and when Krivisiov did eventually reply fired Cleary responded in kind. Cleary raised his hands in victory after the final bell – but the decision went to the surprised Russian lightweight.
Donoghue gave a typically gutsy performance against tough Bulgarian Youth Olympian Dan Asenov, but the St Michael’s Athy flyweight, who took a standing count in the second, lost on a unanimous decision.
Earlier in the day, current European Junior champion John Joyce, who is now the only Irish boxer left in the tournament, received walkover into the semi-finals, but Darryl Moran and Gary Cully lost to England and the Ukraine. Joyce, who is now guaranteed at least bronze, was due to meet Croatian welter Luka Prtenjaca Thursday evening but received a walkover. It is understood that Prtenjaca, a silver medallist at the 2014 World Youths, did not make the weigh.
Cully lost to Denys Pesotsky of the Ukraine in the afternoon session on a unanimous decision. The Kildare southpaw, who was aiming for his second successive European title, injured his left hand in the first round.
The pattern – Cully boxing mostly off the backfoot, Petsotsky working his way inside Cully’s longer reach – was established early in this three-rounder, but it was the Ukrainian that got the decision after three close frames.
Moran bowed out at the last-eight stage to England’s Niall Farrell in the light-fly class also on a split decision, Moran took the first round and established himself with two lefts early in the second; the Donegal teen also finished out that frame with a left to the head right on the bell.
The third was equally close, Farrell using his reach advantage and raking jab well, Moran delivering off both hands on the inside. A big display from Moran who never stopped taking the fight to his elusive opponent.
Thursday is a rest day at the 41-nation tournament.
European Youth Championships 2014 Zagreb, Croatia
October 18th (Preliminaries)
52kg Willie Donoghue (Ireland) beat Sebastigan Sacrici (Serbia) 3-0
60kg James Cleary (Ireland) beat Asefi Soldimann (Germany) 3-0
71kg Fergus Quinn (Ireland) beat Bence Papi (Hungary) 3-0
October 19th (last 32)
56kg Francis Cleary (Ireland) beat Katin Arsenov (Bulgaria) 2-1
69kg John Joyce (Ireland) beat Ogulcan Ozturk (Turkey) 3-0
81kg Cormac Long (Ireland) lost to Algirdas Daniulus (Lithuania) 0-3
91kg James Hughes (Ireland) beat Alexsander Ceiejewski (Poland) 3-0
October 20th (last 16)
60kg James Cleary (Ireland) beat Marsel Tertejyan (Denmark) 3-0
75kg Fergus Quinn (Ireland) lost to Viktar Dziushkevich (Belarus) 0-3
91kg James Hughes (Ireland) lost to Muhammed Baki Yalcin (Turkey) 0-3
October 21st (last 16)
52kg Willie Donoghue (Ireland) beat Yanardag Ugurcan (Turkey) 3-0
56kg Francis Cleary (Ireland) lost to Rexhildo Zeneli (Albania) 0-3
64kg Gary Cully (Ireland) beat Matej Simec (Croatia) 3-0
69kg John Joyce (Ireland) beat Peter George (Scotland) W/O
49kg Darryl Moran (Ireland) lost to Niall Farrell (England) 1-2
52kg Willie Donoghue (Ireland) lost to Dan Asenov (Bulgaria) 0-3
60kg James Cleary (Ireland) lost to Maxim Krivisov (Russia) 1-2
64kg Gary Cully (Ireland) lost to Denys Pesotsky (Ukraine) 0-3
69kg John Joyce (Ireland) beat Luka Prtenjaca (Croatia) W/O
(Irish times apply)
69kg John Joyce (Ireland) v Radzhab Rdzhabav (Russia) or Giorgi Kharabadzs (Georgia)
49kg Darryl Moran (Illies GG)
52kg Willie Donoghue (St Michael’s Athy)
56kg Francis Cleary (Olympic)
60kg James Cleary (Olympics)
64kg Gary Cully (St David’s)
69kg John Joyce (St Michael’s Athy) (Bronze – at least)
75kg Fergus Quinn (Camlough)
81kg Cormac Long (Rathkeale)
91kg James Hughes (Ryston)
Team manager: Sean Canavan
Coaches: Jim O’Neill and Tom Hayes
Physio: Owen Naughton