Irish and French squads and staff at National Stadium gym

Irish and French squads and staff at National Stadium gym

France beat Ireland 4-2 in tonight’s Eilte international at the National Stadium.

Ceire Smith and Kelly Harrington had their hands raised in victory for Ireland at the home of Irish boxing.

Smith got Ireland off to a winning start on a split decision over current French Elite flyweight champion Saray Ovrahmoune, but Dervla Duffy was unlucky not to get the nod over Mona Mestiaen, with two judges leaning in favour of the French bantam.

Moira McElligot, who moved up one weight to face French light Sofia Nabet, was also edged on a split.

Smith said: “It was a good fight. She was small and compact but I was on the front foot for all the rounds. I felt in control, I had her on the backfoot.”

Kelly Harrington tied the match at 2-2 on the first unanimous decision on of the evening, the Dubliner taking all three judges with her versus  current French light-welter champion Amina Zidani.

But France won the final two bouts of on a unanimous verdicts, Erika Guerrier, the French middle champion, and Maily Nicar decisioning Lisa Browne and Christina Desmond.

Irish interim head coache Zaur Antia and club trainers were working Ireland’s corner tonight.

Ovrahmoune,Zidani and Guerrier claimed French Elite titles in Paris last month.

The French team have been training with Ireland for almost a week at the National Stadium gym, culminating in tonight’s six-bout international card.

Meanwhile, Team Ireland, including Desmond, leave for a final training camp in Assisi, Italy on Monday morning.

Katie Taylor and the Irish men’s and women’s team will train in Assisi  in the countdown to the European Olympic qualifiers which begin in Samsun on April 9.

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association thanks all supporters for attending tonight’s international.

Ireland v France  National Stadium Dublin March 26th

51kg Ceire Smith (Cavan) beat Saray Ovrahmoune (France) 2-1

54kg Dervla Duffy (Ryston) lost to Mona Mestiaen (France) 1-2

60kg Moira McElligot (St Michael’s Athy) lost to Sofia Nabet (France) 1-2

64kg Kelly Harrington (Glasnevin) beat  Amina Zidani (France) 3-0

75kg Lisa Browne (Eagles) lost to Erika Guerrier (France) 0-3

75kg Christina Desmond  (Fr Horgan’s) lost to  Maily Nicar (France) 0-3