Ireland took home two medals from Europe’s oldest multi-nations in Bulgaria.

Kellie Harrington (silver) and Aoife O’Rourke (bronze) finished in podium positions at the 71st edition of the Strandja multi-nations in Sofia.

Ireland finished 6th in the rankings tables at the 29-nation tournament and 10th in medals table.


Harrington was shaded on a 3-2 split decision in today’s lightweight final by Finland’s Mira Potkonen.

Potkonen also won the Best Female Boxer Award. Ukraine’s Oleksander Khyzniak claimed the Best Male Boxer Award.

Today’s final was Harrington’s first fight back since injuring her hand in last June’s European Games in Minsk.

Remarkably, the Dubliner won three fights out of four this week on her return to competitive action for the first time in almost eight months.

All of Harrington’s bouts were against Europeans in a tournament which also featured the USA and North African and Middle Eastern nations.

Team Ireland are due to arrive home via Dublin Airport tomorrow morning at 10.4am via Dublin Airport.


Harrington on the lightweight podium
Harrington versus Potkonen
Potkonen has her hand raised in victory
Members of the Irish squad at today’s final

Pictures courtesy of Tibor Kincses

Strandja Multi-Nations Sofia, Bulgaria January 20/25

January 25


60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) lost to Mira Potkonen (Finland) 2-3

January 24


60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) beat Denica Eliseeva (Bulgaria) 5-0
60kg Mira Potkonen (Finland) beat Agnes Alexiusson (Sweden) 5-0
75kg Aoife O’Rourke (Ireland) lost to Naomi Graham (USA) 0-5
75kg Davina Michel (France) beat Anastasiia Chernoklenko (Ukraine) 5-0

January 23


51kg Ceire Smith (Ireland) lost to Virginia Fuchs (USA) 0-5
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) lost to Sonia Lather (India) 2-3
57kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) lost to Mykola Buysenko (Ukraine) 1-4
60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) beat Hanna Okheri (Ukraine) 5-0
63kg George Bates (Ireland) lost to Shiva Thapa (India) 0-5
69kg Christina Desmond (Ireland) lost to Jones Oshae (USA) W/O
75kg Aoife O’Rourke (Ireland) beat Flavia Figuerdo (Brazil) 3-2

January 22

Last 16

51kg Carly McNaul (Ireland) lost to Olena Savchuk (Italy) 0-5
51kg Ceire Smith (Ireland) beat Rabab Cheddar (Morocco) 5-0
57kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) beat Carlos Rocha (Brazil) 5-0
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) beat Jenifer Fernandez (Spain) 5-0
57kg Dean Clancy (Ireland) lost to Francesco Maietta (Italy) Pts
60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) beat Aneta Rygielska (Poland) 5-0
60kg Amy Broadhurst (Ireland) lost to Mira Potkonen (Finland) 0-5
63kg George Bates (Ireland) beat Shpetin Bajoku (Kosova) Pts
63kg Wayne Kelly (Ireland) lost to Paolo Di Lernia (Italy) Pts
69kg Aidan Walsh (Ireland) lost to Johnson Delante (USA) Pts
69kg Kieran Molloy (Ireland) lost to Sing Negi (India) 0-5
75kg Michael Nevin (Ireland) lost to Herbert Souza (Brazil) 2-3
91kg Kiril Afanasev (Ireland) lost to Nikolaz Begadze (Georgia) W/O

January 21

Last 32 and 16

51kg Ceire Smith (Ireland) beat Johanna Wonyou (France) 5-0
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) beat Gutierrez Guadaloupe (USA) 3-2
63kg George Bates (Ireland) beat Lounes Hamraoui (France) 3-2
69kg Christina Desmond (Ireland) beat Beatriz Soares (Brazil) 4-1
75kg Aoife O’Rourke (Ireland) beat Love Holgersson (Sweden) 5-0
81kg Emmett Brennan (Ireland) lost to Stepan Hrekul (Ukraine) 1-4
91kg Kiril Afanasev (Ireland) beat Victor Schelstraette (Belgium) 3-2
91+kg Antione O Griofa (Ireland) lost to Clemente Russo (Italy) 0-5

Irish squad


51kg Ceire Smith (Cavan) and Carly McNaul (Holy Family)

57kg Michaela Walsh (Monkstown, Antrim)

60kg Kellie Harrington (St Mary’s) and Amy Broadhurst (Dealgan)

69kg Christina Desmond (Fr Horgan’s)

75kg Aoife O’Rourke (Castlerea)


57kg Kurt Walker (Canal) and Dean Clancy (Sean McDermott)

63kg George Bates (St Mary’s) and Wayne Kelly (Portlaoise)

69kg Aidan Walsh (Monkstown, Antrim) and Kieran Molloy (Oughterard)

75kg Michael Nevin (Portlaoise)

81kg Emmet Brennan (Dublin Docklands)

91kg Kiril Afanasev (Smithfield)

91kg+ Antoine O’Griofa (Celtic Eagles)


High-Performance Director: Bernard Dunne

Coaches: Zaur Antia, John Conlan, Dmitry Dimitruk, JP Kinsella

Physio: Lorcan McGee

Physiologist: Damien Martin