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Hugh Russell inducted into Belfast City Council's Sporting Hall of Fame

Hugh Russell was inducted into Belfast City Council’s Sporting Hall of Fame. Picture by Declan Roughan

FORMER Olympic boxer Hugh Russell was last night inducted into Belfast City Council's 'Sporting Hall of Fame'.

At an event at Belfast City Hall, Mr Russell was honoured for his sporting achievements, which saw him win a bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games in Edmonton in 1978.

Now a photographer with the Irish News, he also won bronze at the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

Guests at the Belfast Sports Awards ceremony included athletes, volunteers and coaches of all ages and abilities from across the city.

Dame Mary Peters was among the guests at the event, which also saw Sandra Bailie and Sammy McIlroy inducted into the sporting hall of fame.

Recognised as one of Ireland's most talented bowlers, Ms Bailie has almost 70 Irish International caps for indoor and outdoor bowls, while Mr McIlroy, the last of the Busby babes, was the final footballer to be signed to Man United by Sir Matt Busby.

Belfast Lord Mayor Deirdre Hargey said: "Having the opportunity to meet so many great sportspeople across Belfast is without doubt one of the highlights of my year in office as first citizen.

"I'm regularly bowled over by Belfast's energy, commitment and dedication to sport - from competitors, coaches and supporters.

"But even more importantly, we're lucky to have people who tirelessly give of their time to coach, mentor, and train to give people opportunities to experience sport, healthy lifestyles and sporting success."

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