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Boxer James McGivern denied gold by controversial verdict European Youth championships

By David Kelly

Published 30/11/2015

Ballymena's Steven Donnelly could be heading to Rio next summer
Ballymena's Steven Donnelly could be heading to Rio next summer

Belfast's James McGiven will return home with a silver medal from the European Youth championships in Kolobrzeg, Poland.

McGivern, from the St George's club, lost out on gold after a controversial decision in favour of Germany's Denis Gashi in the lightweight decider.

Both boxers had their moments in the first and second round, Gashi landing a good left at the end of the first, but McGivern returning the compliment to send his opponent crashing back against the ropes in the second. McGivern also found the target with the majority of punches in the third, but the decision went to the German.

Monaghan's Stephen McKenna also took silver at light-flyweight, losing narrowly to Azerbaijan's Ruslan Rustamov. Michael Nevin of Portaloise won welter gold.

Meanwhile, it is possible that Ballymena's Steven Donnelly could be heading to Rio next summer due to the complicated qualification system now in place by the world governing body.

Donnelly just came up short during the World Series of Boxing but as 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Andrey Zamkovoy defeated Radzhab Butave in the Russian championship finals, a slot may well have opened up.

Zamkovov will now be expected to be selected by Russia for the Games and it is assumed that Donnelly would be the next in line from the WSB competition to be given that qualification place for Rio.

At the Irish senior championships quarter-finals, Jason McKay of St Paul's Belfast impressed with a second round stoppage of Adam Courtney to seal a place in the flyweight semi-finals.

Irish championships quarter-finals: 52kg Jason McKay (St Pauls Antrim) beat Adam Courtney (St Marys Dublin) TKOI2; 75kg Conor Wallace (St Monicas Newry) beat Connor Coyle (St Josephs Derry) 3-0, 75kg Eddie Byrne (Na Fianna) beat Glory Lmuala Carlos (Maynooth) 3-0; 81kg Sean McGlinchey (Oakleaf) W/O, 81kg John Paul Delaney (Emerald Antrim) beat Matthew Tinker (St Francis) 2-1; 91kg Darren O'Neill (Paulstown) beat Stephen Lawrence (Holy Family Drogheda) 3-0, 91kg Stephen McMonagle (Holy Trinity) beat Ciaran Griffin (Celtic Eagles) 3-0; 91kg Kiril Afansev (Smithfield) beat Christy Joyce (St Michaels Athy) 3-0, 91kg Bernie O'Reilly (Portlaoise) beat Kenneth Okungbowa (Athlone) 2-1

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