Congratulations to Michael O’Reilly and Brendan Irvine who progressed at the World Championships in Doha last night but there was heartache for Dean Walsh.
All three boxers were competing at the worlds for the first time, but at a competition that Billy Walsh ranks as the “hardest in the world”, it was a bitter blow for the Irish head coach to see his nephew Dean bow out following a split-decision opening-round loss.
Irvine was the first Irish boxer to compete out of the 243 fighters scheduled to compete at the 10-day tournament and the Antrim teenager looked mature beyond his years when claiming a 3-0 unanimous points win over Nico Hernandez of the USA.
Portlaoise middleweight O’Reilly got Ireland back to winning ways with another 3-0 unanimous decision win, defeating Ukraine’s Valerii Kharlamov.
The evening’s two victories gave Ireland a solid start to the tournament, which is also a qualifier for the 2016 Rio Games.
Belfast lightweight Seán McComb takes on Lindolfo Garca Delgado of Mexico in Wednesday’s afternoon session, while Wexford welterweight Adam Nolan meets Lithuanian Eimantas Stanionis in the evening bouts.