The Cork County Boxing Board rolled out the red carpet for Irish boxing legend Mick Dowling on Leeside last Saturday.

The Kilkenny-born bantamweight was honoured form his services to the sport at a Boxing Breakfast in the Rebel County to mark the 50th anniversary of his appearance at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico.

Dowling claimed eight National Elite titles in his career and represented his country at the 68 and 1972 Games in Munich.

In 1968, he was beaten in the last-eight on a 4-1 split decision by Japan’s Eiji Marroka for at least bronze.

Four years later he was edged out on a 3-2 split to Cuba’s Orlando Martinez, the eventual gold medalist, in the quarter-finals in Mexico.

Both men, pictured below, met up in Havana in 2015 for the “rematch.”

“I was just fascinated, to drive along a street teeming with people, on a beautiful sunny day, and to spot this guy, so fit-looking, to see his smile and his wave – just to see him standing on a street in Havana, 43 years later. It was amazing,” said Dowling.

Dowling, who works as a boxing analyst with RTE, also claimed two European Elite bronze medals for Ireland.

Last weekend’s function by organised by the Cork Ex-Boxers Association.

Mick O’Brien, President of the Cork County Boxing Board, described Dowling, who received a tremendous reception in the Southern Capitol, as a true legend of Irish boxing.

Conal Thomas made a presentation to the two-time Irish Olympian on behalf of the Cork Boxing Fraternity.


Images: Conal Thomas makes a presentation to Mick Dowling and Mick Dowling in action at the Olympics and meeting Martinez in Havana