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Carly McNaul vows to get better after ‘terrible’ start to Commonwealth medal bid

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Carly McNaul celebrates

Carly McNaul celebrates

PA

Carly McNaul celebrates

‘Terrible’ was the damning verdict from Belfast boxer Carly McNaul on her own performance as she claimed a split decision victory in her opening bout at Birmingham 2022.

The 33-year-old won 52kg silver at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and is one of Team Northern Ireland’s big hopes for another medal here having dropped from flyweight to light flyweight.

McNaul admitted she was lucky to come through her first contest, taking a split decision 3-2 on the judges’ scorecards against Australia’s Kristy Harris.

“It was terrible, just a terrible fight. It was very scrappy, I was two rounds down, I had to dig deep in the last round and was lucky to get through,” she said.

“Hopefully the next one will be better - it has to be. I’m not sure why it went that way, I don’t have an excuse, it wasn’t what I’ve been doing in training.”

McNaul has had a series of injuries since her silver success on the Gold Coast in 2018, including a broken femur, torn hand tendons and scars on her eye that were also operated on.

While the co-captain of the Northern Ireland boxing team was frustrated with her first outing, she is incredibly proud to be representing her country again.

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“My first fight is normally my worst one so now I’ve got past that I know I’ll be a lot better,” she added.

“It’s an amazing experience, this is my second Games and I’m glad to be here. It’s a great atmosphere but I can’t get as good a sun tan, that’s the only thing.”

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