John Paul Hale and Colm Murphy just don’t do boring bouts.

The Star BC and St George’s BC feathers went at it again at the Ulster Elite finals at the Ulster Hall last night and once again served up a cracking three rounds of boxing.

Hale emerged victorious on a 4-1 split after a relentless battle for supremacy and told today’s Irish News he was thrilled.

“We’ve fought each other four times, and every time we fight we give it our all. Outside the ring we’re best mates, he said.

“It was a brilliant fight. Last year gave me the motivation to win again. It’s class to do it here, unreal.

“It (Hale versus Murphy) was another firecracker, brought the house down,” remarked MC Peter O’Donnell who was honoured for his services to boxing last evening.  “Both young men received a standing ovation.”

Kane Tucker took the early route to victory on an evening when Ulster’s finest battled each other all the way down to the final bell, with 60% of the finals ending on split decisions on a highly competitive finals card at the iconic Ulster Hall.

Three Irish Olympians – flyweight Sean McCafferty (St John Bosco), light-welter Brian Anderson (Middle Row) and featherweight Paddy Fitzsimons (St Matthew’s) – from the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo were honoured at the flagship tournament of Ulster boxing, along with ring legend Charlie Nash and many of Ulster’s greats.

Ulster Board President Kevin Duffy, Secretary Charlie Toland and Ulster Board members attended last night’s finals along with IABA President and CEO Dom O’Rourke and Fergal Carruth.

Ulster Elite Championships

February 25

Ulster Hall

Finals (7.15pm)


51kg Caitlin Fryers (Immaculata) W/O
52kg Jack O’Neill (Corpus Christi) W/O
54kg Sionnan McKenna (Holy Family GG) beat Clodagh McComiskey (Gilford) 3-2
49kg Diarmuid Toland (Holy Family GG) beat Craig Bigger (Cookstown) 5-0
60kg Rory Lavery (Holy Family GG) beat Mosa Kembula (Holy Trinity) (Technical decision)
81kg Kane Tucker (Emerald) beat Gareth McDowell (Eastside) RSC1
91+kg Patrick Rogers (St Johns) beat Dennis Borskins (Sacred Heart) 5-0
91kg Karol Dlugosz (Immaculata) beat Michael Erpelding (Holy Family GG) 5-0
63kg Daryl Clarke (Monkstown) beat Jack McGivern (St Georges) 3-2
75kg Jake Tucker (Emerald) beat Gerard French (Emerald) 3-2
69kg Eugene McKeever (Holy Family Drogheda) beat Matthew McCole (Illies GG) 4-1
57kg John Paul Hale (Star) beat Colm Murphy (St Georges) 4-1

Special Contest: Shauna O’Callaghan (Clann Naofa) beat Rosie Doherty (St Francis, Limerick) 4-1

February 20

Devenish Complex


57kg: JP Hale (Star) beat Conor Kerr (Monkstown) 5-0
57kg: Colm Murphy (St George’s) beat Kane Marshall (Emerald) 4-1
63kg: Jack McGivern (St George’s) beat Dominic Bradley (Errigal) 3-2
63kg: Daryl Clarke (Monkstown) beat Caoimhin Ferguson (Emerald) 3-2
69kg: Eugene McKeever (Holy Family, Drogheda) beat Edgar Vuskans (Holy Trinity) 5-0
69kg: Matthew McCole (Illies GG) beat Tiarnan Duffy (Clonard) 5-0
91kg: Karol Dlugosz (Immaculata) beat Thomas Maughan (Cavan) 4-1
91kg: Michael Erpelding (Holy Family, Belfast) beat Stephen McMullan (Newington) 3-2
91+kg: Dennis Boriskins (Sacred Heart, Newry) beat William Close (BABA) 3-2
91+kg: Patrick Rogers (St John’s, Derry) beat Frankie Crothers Carrothers (Gleann) 5-0

February 18

Devenish Complex


57kg: Colm Murphy (St George’s) beat Jude Gallagher (Two Castles) 3-2
63kg: Jack McGivern (St George’s) beat Ben Ferran (Clonard) 5-0
63kg: Daryl Clarke (Monkstown) beat Ryan Lavery (Holy Family, Belfast) 5-0


49kg: Diarmuid Toland (Holy Family, Belfast) beat Ricky Nesbitt (Holy Family, Drogheda) 3-2
60kg: Rory Lavery (Holy Family, Belfast) beat Lee McKee (Star) 5-0
60kg: Mosa Kembula (Holy Trinity) beat Teo Alin (Cookstown) 3-2