Michaela Walsh, who has already won two bouts at the 2018 EUBC European Women’s Championships at the Asics Arena in Sofia, is back between the ropes this afternoon when she ‘gloves off’ against Helina Bruyevich of Belarus, whom she last met and defeated in 2014.
24 years old Walsh, will be guaranteed at least a bronze if she wins today’s encounter and like Dubliner Kellie Harrington has already qualified for the 2019 European Games in Minsk, Belarus by virtue of finishing in the top eight in these championships.
Kellie Harrington is also within striking distance of the medals in the Bulgarian capital.
She overcame the challenge of Czech Republic lightweight Katerina Humlova yesterday to book her place in Saturday’s quarter-finals, against the Ukranian, Iulia Tsyplakova.
The duo eventually ‘boxed off’ after a delay because of a power cut in the Asics Arena venue. She has high hopes of emulating Katie Taylor who struck Gold at the inaugural European Games.
Grainne Walsh was beaten on a unanimous decision by Russian southpaw Iaroslava Iakushina in the welter class, but she could still qualify for the 2019 European Games in Minsk IF the Russian strikes Gold or Silver in these championships ,so on this occasion Irish fans will be ‘rooting’ for Russia, a rare occurrence!
The Spartacus Tullamore fighter took the fight to her opponent at every opportunity, found the target with solid hooks, particularly in the latter rounds, but the Moscovite’s slick counter punching was impressive in all three frames.
European Women’s Elite Championships Sofia, Bulgaria:
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) beat Karris Artingstall (England) 5-0
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) beat Alessia Mesiano (Italy) 5-0
60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) beat Katerina Humlova (Czech Republic) 5-0
69kg Grainne Walsh (Ireland) lost to Iaroslava Iakushina (Russia) 0-5
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) v Helina Bruyevich (Belarus)
60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) v Iulia Tsyplakova (Ukraine)
57kg Michaela Walsh (Monkstown, Antrim)
60kg Kellie Harrington (St Mary’s, Dublin )
69kg Grainne Walsh (Spartacus, Offaly)
Team Manager: Bernard Dunne
Head Coach: Zaur Antia
Coach: Dmitry Dmitruk
Physio: Muireann Harte