Seven Irish boxers will compete for at least bronze in the quarter-finals of the 71st edition of the Strandja multi-nations in Sofia tomorrow.

Kellie Harrington, Ceire Smith, Michaela Walsh, Kurt Walker, George Bates, Christina Desmond and Aoife O’Rourke are between the ropes.

2018 World Elite champion Harrington is in against Ukraine’s Hanna Okheri and current European champions Walker and O’Rourke meet Ukraine’s Mykola Butsenko and Brazil’s Flavia Figuerdo.

Harrington impressed today in her first competitive outing since picking up a hand injury at the European Games last June.

The Dublin lightweight beat Poland’s Aneta Rygielska on a unanimous decision – 30-27,30-27,30-27, 30-27, 29-28.

Boxing begins at 12pm (Irish time) tomorrow. Six Irish boxers compete in the early session.

Bates meets India’s Shiva Thapa in the first bout in the evening session which begins at 4pm (Irish time).

Click here for the schedule.

Strandja Multi-Nations Sofia, Bulgaria January 20/25

January 23


51kg Ceire Smith (Ireland) v Virginia Fuchs (USA)
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) v Sonia Lather (India)
57kg Kurt Walker (Ireland) v Mykola Buysenko (Ukraine)
60kg Kellie Harrington (Ireland) v Hanna Okheri (Ukraine)
63kg George Bates (Ireland) v Shiva Thapa (India)
69kg Christina Desmond (Ireland) v Jones Oshae (USA)
75kg Aoife O’Rourke (Ireland) v Flavia Figuerdo (Brazil)

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) 4-1
57kg Michaela Walsh (Ireland) beat Jenifer Fernandez (Spain) 5-0
57kg Dean Clancy (Ireland) lost to Francesco Maietta (Italy) 0-5
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) 4-1
63kg Wayne Kelly (Ireland) lost to Paolo Di Lernia (Italy) 2-3
69kg Aidan Walsh (Ireland) lost to Johnson Delante (USA) 0-5
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