The 2011 AIBA World Amateur Championships get under way in Baku, Azerbaijan on Monday next and with not only the world titles at stake but also qualification for the 2012 Olympic Games, it is hardly surprising that a record 685 boxers from 127 countries have entered.
Twenty one countries have named a full complement of ten boxers. Apart from Ireland these include Russia, Cuba, USA, DR Congo, Germany, Kenya, Uganda, Mexico, China, India, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Georgia, Poland, Hungary, Turkey, Ukraine and Australia.
Though England has sent a team of 9 there will in fact be in fact be some 14 British fighters taking part as there are also two from Wales and 1 from Scotland in the “GB Boxing squad ” plus another 2 (Sean McGoldrick and Joe Cordina both representing Wales). Confusing though that be it is in fact the case
as for these AIBA Championships England,Scotland and Wales are all allowed to enter teams where as in London 2012 there will only be a GB Boxing Team. Though Romania has recently been suspended from the AIBA there will also be a team of 8 from that country in Baku under the flag of “AIBA-Romania”.
The Irish Elite squad have been in Germany for the past week and are due to participate against Canada in Cologne before moving on to Baku.
The team has been in training – and sparring – with Germany, Canada, Denmark, Holland, Moldova and Norway ahead of the Worlds.
Irish head coach Billy Walsh understandably believes that with Olympic qualification and World medals up for grabs in Baku, the competition will be intense.
“We’re happy where the squad are at the moment. We’ve been here for over a week now and we’re looking forward to getting out of here and settling in in Baku”
“We’ll have a test match with Canada and then we leave Wednesday. We’ve had a very good training camp in Cologne, away from all distractions.
“We’re less than a week away from the start of the World Championships and Olympic qualifiers now and that’s what it’s all about. That’s what we’re here for.”
Irish Squad 2011 AIBA World Championships & Olympic Qualifiers Baku, Azerbaijan Sept/22nd/Oct 10th
49Kg: (Light-flyweight) – Paddy Barnes (Holy Family BC, Belfast)
52Kg: (Flyweight) – Michael Conlon (St John Bosco BC, Belfast)
56Kg: (Bantamweight) – John Joe Nevin (Cavan BC)
60Kg: (Lightweight) – David Oliver Joyce (St Michael’s Athy BC, Kildare)
64Kg: (Light-welterweight) – Ray Moylette (St Anne’s BC, Mayo)
69Kg: (Welterweight) – Roy Sheehan (St Michael’s Athy BC, Kildare)
75Kg: (Middleweight) – Darren O’Neill (Paulstown BC, Kilkenny)
81Kg: (Light-heavyweight) – Joe Ward (Moate BC, Westmeath)
91Kg: (Heavyweight) – Ken Egan (Neilstown BC, Dublin)
91Kg+: (Super-heavyweight) – Con Sheehan (Clonmel BC, Tipperary)
Team manager: Des Donnelly
Coaches: Billy Walsh, Zuar Antia, Jimmy Halpin
Physio: Scott Murphy
Performance Psychologist: Gerry Hussey
Performance Analysis: Alan Swanton
The GB official squad includes:
Charlie Edwards (England, 49 Kg – Lynn ABC, London)
Khalid Yafai (England, 52 Kg – Birmingham City, Birmingham)
Andrew Selby (Wales, 52 Kg – Splott ABC, Barry
Luke Campbell (England, 56Kg – St Paul’s, Hull
Martin Ward (England, 60Kg – Repton, London
Tom Stalker (England, 64Kg – Salisbury, Liverpool
Josh Taylor (Scotland, 64Kg – Lochend, Edinburgh
Scott Cardle (England, 69Kg – Kirkham, Lytham
Fred Evans (Wales, 69Kg -St Joseph’s, Cardiff
Antony Ogogo (England, 75Kg -Triple A Boxing Club, Lowestoft
Simon Vallily (England, 91Kg -South Bank ABC, Middlesbrough
Anthony Joshua (England, 91+Kg -Finchley ABC, London
SportsNewsIreland will bring you news of the Irish team throughout the tournament.