Christina Desmond,pictured, bowed out of the European Women’s Elite Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria today after being adjudged to have lost to Maily Nicar.


The French middleweight was awarded a split decision and will now meet England’s Natasha Gales, who beat Wales’ Lauren Price in the corresponding semi-final, in Wednesday’s 75kg decider.


Desmond – her straight lefts and lefts hooks consistently finding the target – had excellent first, second and fourths round this afternoon, while the hard-working Nicar might have arguably  shaded the third.


Desmond’s cleaner and more solid shots, however, were the outstanding feature of a thrilling four-rounder.


The Cork southpaw, an Irish Youth Olympian and World Youth silver medallist who beat Holland’s Olympic silver medallist Nouchka Fontijn this year, will be bringing home a bronze from Sofia.


She joins an illustrious  group of three Irish female boxers which includes Katie Taylor (6 gold) and Clare Grace (one bronze) who have medalled at this level.


The podium finish for the Fr. Horgan stand out  also bridges a 33-year gap for Leeside boxing since two-time Olympian Kieran Joyce of the Sunnyside BC won European bronze, also in Bulgaria, in 1983.


Today’s decision brings Ireland’s competitive interest in the 10th European Women’s Elite Championships to a close.


Desmond will be presented with her medal tomorrow.






European Women’s Elite Championships Sofia, Bulgaria

(Last 16 bouts unless stated)

November 15th

54kg Dervla Duffy (Ireland) lost to Lacramiora Perijoc (Romania) 0-3

November 16th

48kg Lauren Hogan (Ireland) lost to Ekaterina Pinigiana (Russia) 0-3

69kg Grainne Walsh (Ireland) beat Marija Petovic (Serbia) TKO3

November 17th

60kg Shauna O’Keeffe (Ireland) beat Aneta Rygielska (Poland) 3-0

November 18th

57kg Moira McElligott (Ireland) beat Sara Beram (Croatia) 3-0

64kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) lost to Aleksandra Ordina (Russia) 1-2

November 19th


60kg Shauna O’Keeffe (Ireland) lost to Daria Abramova (Russia) 0-3

November 20th


57kg Moira McElligott (Ireland) v Natalya Samokhina (Russia) 0-3
69kg Grainne Walsh (Ireland) lost to Saadat Abdulaeva (Russia) 0-2
75kg Christina Desmond (Ireland) beat Oksana Trofimova (Russia) 3-0

November 22nd


75kg Christina Desmond (Ireland) lost to Maily Nicar (France) 1-2
75kg Natasha Gale (England) beat Lauren Price (Wales) 2-1

Irish Squad

48kg Lauren Hogan (St.Brigids Edenderry)
54kg Dervla Duffy (Mulhuddart)
57kg Moira McElliggot (St Michael’s Athy)
60kg Shauna O’Keeffe (Clonmel)
64kg Kellie Harrington (Glasnevin)
69kg Grainne Walsh (Sparticus)
75kg Christina Desmond (Fr Horgans) (Bronze)

Team manager: Noreen Glendening
Physio: Caoimhe Gilmore
Coaches: Zaur Antia, Eddie Bolger, Dmitri Dimitruc
R&J: Sadie Duffy