Team Ireland in Ukraine

Joe Ward and Kurt Walker booked tickets into the last-eight of the European Championships in Kharkiv, Ukraine today.

But Irish captain Darren O’Neill and Emmet Brennan bowed out at the last 16 stage on 4-1 and 5-0 split and unanimous decisions to Ramazazaqn Musilimov of the Ukraine and Azeri No. 2 seed Kamran Shakhsuvarly in the heavy and middle classes.

Ward, the current European champion and No. 1 seed in Kharkiv, floored Slovakia’s Matus Strnisko in the first en route to a comfortable victory and Walker showed his class for a second time at the tournament to post a 4-1 split verdict over Tayfur Aliyev of Azerbaijan, the No. 2 seed in the bantam class.

Today’s last 16 victories qualify Ward and Walker for the World Championships in Hamburg, Germany in August/September. Sean McComb and Brendan Irvine qualified Monday after earning last-16 wins.

Likewise, Ireland will be represented in four weights – fly, bantam, light-welter and light-heavy – in Hamburg.

Irvine, Walker, McComb and Ward will be back in action tomorrow in the quarter-finals. If any of the Irish quartet win they’ll be guaranteed at least bronze.

European Elite Men’s Championships Kharkiv, Ukraine June 14th/25th

June 16th

(Last 32)

64kg Sean McComb (Ireland) beat Erik Agateljan (Czech Republic) 5-0

June 17th:

Last 32

56kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) beat SeverianeChildaze (Georgia) 5-0
69kg Steven Donnelly (Ireland) lost to Sergei Sobylinski (Russia) 0-5

June 18th

Last 32

60kg Pat Mongan (Ireland) lost to Artur Bril (Germany) 0-5
75kg Emmet Brennan (Ireland) beat Bartosz Golebiewski (Poland) 3-2

June 19th

Last 16

52kg Brendan Irvine (Ireland) beat Bathuhan Citfci (Turkey) 5-0
60kg Sean McComb (Ireland) beat Vitaly Dunaystev (Russia) 3-2
91kg+ Dean Gardiner (Ireland) lost to Viktor Vykhryst (Ukraine) TKO2

June 20th

Last 16

56kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) beat Tayfur Aliyev (Azerbaijan) 4-1
75kg Emmet Brennan (Ireland) lost to Kamran Shakhsuvarly (Azerbaijan) 0-5
81kg Joe Ward (Ireland) beat Matus Strnisko (Slovakia) 5-0
91kg Darren O’Neill (Ireland) lost to Ramazazaqn Musilimov (Ukraine) 1-4

June 21st


52kg Brendan Irvine (Ireland) v Gabriel Escobar (Spain)
56kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) v Raffaele Di Serio (Italy)
64kg Sean McComb (Ireland) v Luke McCormack (England)
81kg Joe Ward (Ireland) v Sean Lazzerini (Scotland)

Irish squad

52kg – Flyweight – Brendan Irvine (St Pauls)

56kg – Bantamweight – Kurt Walker (Canal)

60kg – Lightweight – Patrick Mongan (Olympic)

64kg – Light-welter – Sean McComb (Holy Trinity)

69kg – Welterweight – Steven Donnelly (All Saints)

75kg – Middleweight – Emmett Brennan (Glasnevin)

81kg – Light-heavy – Joe Ward (Moate)

91kg – Heavyweight – Darren O’Neill (Paulstown)

91+kg – Super-heavy – Dean Gardiner (Clonmel)

High-Performance Director/Head of Delegation: Bernard Dunne

Head Coach: Zaur Antia

Coaches: Dmitry Dimitruc, Jimmy Payne, Eoin Pluck

Physio: Seamus Caffrey

Doctor: Jim Clover

Strength & Conditioning: John Cleary

Performance Analysis: Alan Swanton