In Boxing, world lightweight champ Katie Taylor advanced to the semi-finals of the Strandja Multi-Nations following a 7-0 win over Danuse Dilhofava of the Czech Republic in Pazardjik, Bulgaria yesterday.
The Bray woman will now meet English southpaw Natasha Jones in todays semi-finals.Dublin middleweight Sinéad Kavanagh received a bye into the last-four and will face Tamara Garcia of Spain at the 22-nation men’s and women’s tournament.
In Dublin, Ken Egan is back in action at the home of Irish boxing tonight when he meets Thomas Roohan in the first of the weekend’s light-heavyweight semi-finals in the Elite Championships at the National Stadium in Dublin.
ELITE SENIOR CHAMPIONSHIPS (National Stadium Dublin: Tonight (6pm). Quarter-final – 81kg: D Joyce (St Michaels Athy) v S Allen (Arklow); Semi-finals – 52kg: G Molloy (Moate) v M Conlon (St John Bosco); 56kg: T McCullagh (Holy Family) v S Cox (Gorey); 60kg: E Donovan (St Michaels Athy) v M McDonagh (St Marys); 64kg: J McDonagh (Dockers) v R Hickey (Grangecon); 69kg: JJ Joyce (St Michaels Athy) v K Brabazon (St Saviours OBA); 75kg: D ONeill (Paulstown) v C Cummings (Holy Trinity); 81kg: K Egan (Neilstown) v T Roohan (Ballincarrow); 91kg: C Sheehan (Clonmel) v S Ward (Monkstown); 91kg+: C McMonagle (Holy Trinity) v C Devaney (Ballincarrow).
Women’s Semi-finals – 51kg: D Rogers (Bray) v K Rowland (Geesala); 51kg: R Dillon (Crumlin) v C Smith (Cavan); 57kg: S Quaile (Drimnagh) v M Walsh (Holy Family); 57kg: E Agnew (Dealgan) v D Duffy (Ryston); 64kg: A Murphy (Eastside) v S Close (Abbey); 64kg: S Mason (Bray) v K Harrington (Corinthians); 69kg: L Traynor (Bray) v C Connolly (Raphoe); 69kg: N Hamill (Gleann) v J Lyons (St Francis).
England reached the quarter-finals of the European Team Championship in Amsterdam defeating Ireland 4-1.
Chloe Magee took Ireland’s only point, beating Sarah Walker.Scott Evans lost to Rajiv Ouseph; Chris Adcock and Andy Ellis beat Evans and Sam Magee in the doubles.Mariana Agathangelou and Heather Olver beat Jennie King and Sinéad Chambers. Sam and Chloe Magee also lost in mixed doubles.
Derval O’Rourke will miss this weekend’s National Indoor Championships in Belfast raising some concerns about her race fitness ahead of the European Indoor Championships in Paris in just two weeks.
O’Rourke sustained a minor groin strain in training last week, ruling her out of the Karlsruhe meeting in Germany last Sunday. She’d also fallen at training, badly cutting her knee.She won’t race again until the Europeans in Paris, where her heats and final are all set for the opening day, March 4th.So O’Rourke will go into Paris will just two races under her belt; the 8.16 she clocked in Linz, Austria, when finishing second (“very average”, she says), and the 8.03 she ran in Liévin, France, when finishing third (“a little bit more respectable”).
Mary Cullen, who won European Indoor bronze over 3,000 metres two years ago, will make her debut at the Belfast Odessy venue, looking to secure her place on the Ireland team for Paris. Cullen has already qualified thanks to the 8:56.89 she clocked in Liévin, but will face strong competition from Fionnuala Britton and Stephanie Reilly, amongst others.
Paul Hession has since withdrawn and is instead focusing all his efforts on the outdoor season, where he will concentrate on the 200 metres.David Gillick, the former two-time European Indoor champion, who is set to miss the indoor season altogether and concentrate on preparations for the outdoor season at his new base in Florida, where he is working with American Lance Brauman, coach to Tyson Gay.
Having returned from a 12 day training camp in Majorca, six Irish riders will be in action at the final round of the World Cup series in Manchester. Caroline Ryan, Ciara Horne, Jenny OReilly and Siobhan Dervan ride in the team pursuit; Martin Irvine in the omnium and Felix English in the individual pursuit.The World Cup is the final meet before the World Championships next month in Apeldoorn.
The world cup and world championships are crucial to the riders ranking and Olympic qualification aspirations.