Irish squad in Romania


Michaela Walsh believes that the small margins can make a crucial difference in Elite international boxing.

The Belfast feather claimed gold at the Nicolae Linca Memorial in Romania last Saturday to help Ireland top the medals table. Ireland, Romania and England, in that order, finished in the top three.

Joe Ward, Grainne Walsh and Aoife O’Rourke also won gold in Romania and Kellie Harrington and Kiril Afanasev took home silver.

Walsh, the current EU champion whose brother Aidan claimed gold at the Celtic Box Cup which concluded in Dungarvan last Sunday, has one eye November’s World Women’s Elite Championships in New Delhi, India.

The tournament is not a qualifier for Tokyo 2020 but will give a good indication of the pecking order on the road to the 32nd Olympiad.

“Less than one per cent can make a difference – it can be in your diet, your training, it can be in anything. I’m just trying to learn as much as I can,” Walsh told today’s Irish News.

“When you’re away watching someone like Joe Ward, the things he does, you’re picking things up from everyone.

“No-one’s perfect, everyone can improve, but the margins are so small. One punch at the end of a round can win you a fight. When I talk about gold medals only, that’s not just about winning gold medals – that’s about gold medals in everything.

“I want to be the best trainer, the hardest worker, everything. I just want to improve every day.”

Katie Taylor won gold the last time the World Women’s Elite were hosted in New Delhi and Walsh wants to bridge the 12-year gap.

“I want to go and win it outright – I’m going to see the best 57 kilo boxers in the world there. We’re all chasing those spots for Tokyo, and everybody’s going to see where they are,” added Walsh.


Ireland’s All-Time medalist at the World Women’s Elite Championships.

60kg: Katie Taylor (5 Gold, 1 Bronze – 2006,2008,2010,2012,2014,2016)

64kg: Kellie Harrington (Silver – 2016)