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The Irish News Archive - Aug 30 1998: Blow for boxing medal hope Stephen Kirk

BANGKOK BOUND...Ulster’s senior boxing squad head off to Thailand to compete in the King’s Cup in Bangkok. The team, pictured with coaches Frank Gervin and Paul McMahon at the Commonwealth Games launch yesterday is: (l to r): Stephen Kirk, Willie Cowan, Jason McKay, Mark O’Hare, Jim Rooney, Conor McAllister, Tommy Donnelly, and Liam Cunningham

STEPHEN Kirk’s Commonwealth Games hopes lie in tatters and his career is in the balance after a routine brain scan taken by the boxer revealed an irregularity.

Light heavyweight hope Kirk was pulled out of the Northern Ireland squad by the Ulster Boxing Council last night following the shock development.

Ulster Boxing president Pat McCrory said the council were left with no option but to withdraw the fighter from the Kuala Lumpur games after advice from their medical officer Dr Sean Donnelly.

“It’s a big blow to boxing, it’s a massive blow to Steven Kirk, his family, the Ulster Council and the Commonwealth Games Council. “As a precaution, we have had to take the decision that Steven won’t compete in the Commonwealth Games.”

Kirk was probably regarded as Northern Ireland’s best bet for a gold medal.

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JOHN Reid issued an unequivocal response to the uncertainty cast over his future this week with a 73-1 four-timer at Goodwood yesterday.

The Irishman captured the Group Three Prestige Stakes for Sangster and his son Ben on Circle of Gold, as well as three other races on the card courtesy of Just In Time, Pairumani Star and Banningham Breeze.

Circle of Gold, unlucky to be beaten on her debut at Ascot but a decisive winner at Newbury last time, was always cruising behind the pace set by Hasty Words.

Taking it up passing the furlong pole, the 8-13 favourite had merely to be punched out by her rider to beat Choirgirl by a length.

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WAYNE McCullough has indicated he has signed his part of a contract to fight WBO world featherweight champion Naseem Hamed on Saturday, October 31.

It’s being reported widely in America that McCullough is set to bank an “unexpected” $600,000 paycheque.

Also reported in the US media is that the original Hamed target, WBO junior featherweight titleist Kennedy McKinney, was torpedoed for a second time allegedly due to demands by his promoters, it’s claimed.

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ANTRIM defender Seamus McMullan will miss Dunloy’s Tennents Antrim hurling semi-final against Loughgiel tomorrow at Casement Park.

Club PRO Tony Shivers revealed last night that McMullan is on holiday in Italy and that there is no question of him lining out for the Cuchulainns in the semi-final.

Dunloy could also be without Paul Molloy, who sustained an ankle injury in training in midweek and is rated as very doubtful. This year’s Dunloy team shows a number of changes from the side which won the Ulster Club Championship last autumn.

Tony McGrath has retired from hurling but his family will be represented by brother Ciaran, who has been among the goals already for the Cuchulainns during the championship.

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KENNY Dalglish last night insisted he did not resign as Newcastle manager but was sacked, and has appointed legal advisers to fight for compensation.

The club’s plc said on Thursday that it had been advised by Dalglish on August 18 that he wished to quit as team manager as soon as possible. 

 

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