Athlone heavyweight and IATBA representative Kenneth Okungbowa won on a unanimous decision over Kiril Afanasev who was representing the IABA.
The third level standout who claimed a bronze medal at the World University Championships in Thailand last October brought the action to Afanasev from the first to the last bell.
He took the centre of the ring and kept throwing big power shots and fast jabs to control the contest. Afanasev refused to take a step back in what made for a real all action contest.
Okungbowa used an excellent straight backhand throughout the contest to set up his combinations. He rocked Afanasev a two stages during the contest with excellent shots but Afanasev refused to buckle. Both boxers kept a high tempo throughout this energy sapping bout and the watching crowd got their money’s worth from the ring action.
After the final bell sounded to end the bout, Okungbowa raised his fist to the crowd to state that he had won. Less than a minute later, his intuition was proved correct when every judge went in his favour and sent him into Sundays final where he will face the 6ft 4inch French boxer Rany Hadj Aissa who won his corresponding heavyweight semi final.
Picture: Kenny with IATBA coach Paddy Gallagher following his semi final win.