Boxing legend McCourt has new claim to fame
Ulster boxers excelled at the Irish Amateur Boxing Association's annual awards ceremony in the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel in Dublin on Saturday night, with legend Jim McCourt inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Irish amateur boxing has arguably never produced a more pure exponent of the Noble Art as McCourt who would have been a star in any era.
Boxing out of the Immaculata club, McCourt won bronze medals at the 1964 Olympics and 1965 European Championships. He also claimed Commonwealth gold in Jamaica in 1966 and seven Irish senior titles at three different weights in an amazing career spanning the 1960s and 70s.
Belfast's European Championship gold medallist Paddy Barnes shared the Best Overall Boxer Award with World lightweight champion Katie Taylor who was recently voted the AIBA's female boxer of the year.
There were two further accolades for Barnes as the Northern Ireland boxing team were honoured for their unprecedented haul of three gold and two silver medals at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi. He also received an elite award along with Taylor and fellow European medallists Kenny Egan and Londonderry's Tyrone McCullagh.
The Elite boxer award went to Athy's Eric Donovan, while current AIBA World Youth and Olympic Youth champions Joe Ward and Belfast's Ryan Burnett had their remarkable 2010 achievements recognised.