Irish Elite champion Wayne Kelly, pictured, believes the three bouts he got under his belt in the USA are all part of the learning process on the road to the 32nd Olympiad.

The Irish squad, under head coach Zaur Antia and staff, arrived home from America early this morning after their three-match meeting with the Stars N’ Stripes in Boston, Springfield and Manchester, New Hampshire.

Kelly, who boxes out of the Portlaoise BC, beat Adrian Benton to end the tour on a high note with both sides claiming four wins apiece in New Hampshire.

Kelly, Kellie Harrington Kieran Molloy and Caoimhin Ferguson had their hands raised in victory in Manchester.

“I am happy with how the experience went, first time fighting in the States and I had three competitive fights with world class operators, said Kelly.

“This is all a learning curve and I am growing as an elite boxer and I can’t wait to keep improving and learning.

“That is my aim for this year. With next year being Olympic qualifier year I want to  be the best boxer I can be and win European and World medals to reach my dream, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.”

Bernard Dunne, IABA High-Performane Diector and team manager in the USA, hailed the performances of the Irish team against the Americans.

Both nations met 30 times in the three-match tour.Fifteen of the bouts were decided on split decisions.



USA v Ireland Manchester, New Hampshire

March 21st

60kg Stacia Suttles lost to Kellie Harrington 0-3
75kg Leah Cooper beat Aoife Burke 3-0
60kg James Browning beat  Francis Cleary 2-1
64kg Adrian Benton lost to  Wayne Kelly 1-2
64kg Charlie Sheehy lost to Caoimhin Ferguson 1-2
69kg Freudis Rojas Jr. lost to Kieran Molloy 1-2
75kg Nikita Ababiy beat Gerard French 3-0
91+kg Richard Torrez  beat Dean Gardiner 3-0

USA 4 Ireland 4

USA v Ireland  Springfield

March 15th

60kg: Amelia Moore  beat Kellie Harrington 2-1
69kg: Oshae Jones beat Grainne Walsh 2-1
60kg: Marc Castro  beat George Bates  2-1
64kg Charlie Sheehy  beat Wayne Kelly 2-1
64kg: Tiger Johnson beat Caoimhin Ferguson 2-1
69kg: Quinton Randall lost to Paddy Donovan 0-3
75kg: Troy Isley beat Gerard French 3-0
75kg: Nikita Ababiy lost to Brett McGinty 1-2
81kg: Khalil Coe beat Caoimhin Agyarko-Hynes 3-0
91kg: Adrian Tillman lost to Kiril Afanasev 0-3

USA 7 Ireland 3

USA v Ireland Boston

March 12th

54kg: Virginia Fuchs beat Lauren Hogan RSC2
60kg: Stacia Suttles lost to Kellie Harrington 0-3
69kg: Oshae Jones beat Grainne Walsh 2-1
60kg: Marc Castro beat Frankie Cleary 3-0
60kg: Keyshawn Davis beat George Bates 3-0
64kg: Tiger Johnson beat Wayne Kelly 2-1
69kg: Quinton Randall lost to Kieran Molloy 1-2
75kg: Troy Isley beat Bret McGinty 3-0
75kg: Nikita Ababiy lost to Michael Nevin 1-2
81kg: Khalil Coe beat Caoimhin Agyarko-Hynes 3-0
91kg: Adrian Tillman lost to Kiril Afanasev Pts 1-2
91kg+: Richard Torres beat Dean Gardiner 3-0

USA 8 Ireland 4

Irish squad


54kg: Lauren Hogan (St Brigid’s BC)

60kg: Kellie Harrington (St Mary’s BC)

69kg: Grainne Walsh (Spartacus BC)

75kg: Aoife Burke (St Mary’s BC)


91kg+: Dean Gardiner (Clonmel BC)

91kg: Kiril Afanasev (Smithfield BC)

81kg: Caoimhin Agyarko-Hynes (Holy Trinity BC)

75kg: Michael Nevin (Portlaoise BC)

75kg: Brett McGinty (Oakleaf BC)

75kg: Gerard French (Clonard BC)

69kg: Kieran Molloy (Oughterard BC)

69kg: Eugene McKeever (Holy Family BC)

69kg: Paddy Donovan (OLOL BC)

64kg: Wayne Kelly (Portlaoise BC)

64kg: Caoimhin Ferguson (Clonard BC)

60kg: George Bates (St Mary’s BC)

60kg: Francis Cleary (Ballina BC)

Team manager – Bernard Dunne

Head coach – Zauri Antia

Coach – Phillip Keogh

Coach – Martin Donovan

Coach – Paul Thompson