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Three the magic number as St John's celebrate trio of Irish titles

The three Irish title-winners from St John's, Swatragh are, from left, Peter Convery, Eoghan Quinn and Ronan McNamee
Neil Loughran

ULSTER are taking a strong team to the Black Forest Cup in Germany later this month, and Eoghan Quinn will be among those looking to add another title to his growing collection.

The talented teenager won the 50kg title at the national Youth 1 championships in Dublin last month, getting the better of Holy Trinity’s John McConnell, and is one of an emerging crop coming through the ranks at the St John’s club in Swatragh.

Formed in 2010 by Ciaran Quinn and Adrian Brolly they, along with fellow coach Ciaran Casey, have seen their hard work bear fruit in recent times.

That was Eoghan Quinn’s fourth Irish title, while Peter Convery picked up a first by coming up trumps in the Boy 4 championship, also at 50kg, beating Suffie Edris (Monkstown, Dublin) in the decider.

Ronan McNamee took top honours in the 48kg division of the Boy 2 championships to complete an impressive hat-trick, while a few weeks later Thomas Brolly reached the 41.5kg junior cadet final.

And that haul could be increased this Friday as young Deanna Parke – who travels to the club from Bushmills twice a week – is in All-Ireland semi-final action.

It has been a busy year so far, but those leading the way at St John’s wouldn’t have it any other way.

“We’re up and down the road to Dublin a fair bit the last nine or 10 weekends, but that’s what you want I suppose,” said Ciaran Quinn who, along with Holy Trinity’s Peter Brady and Star’s Liam Corr, will be one of the coaches heading to Germany for the Black Forest Cup from May 23-27.

“There’s a good squad of them coming through now. We’re opened from 2010 and they’ve been coming up through after starting at maybe seven or eight years of age.

“Lucky for us we’re taking a couple every year.”

The Co Derry club also boasts a reigning Ulster senior [formerly intermediate] champion Paddy Rogers, who has won the last two provincial titles at that level.

A brother of current Slaughtneil and Derry Gaelic footballer Brendan, sporting prowess clearly runs in the family and Quinn says the super-heavyweight is progressing well.

He said: “Paddy came late to it, he probably didn’t start boxing until he was 19-20 or so, but he’s definitely coming on.

“He’s 6”5, probably about 19 stone, a big lad and he’s doing well. Slaughtneil haven’t taken their foot off the pedal this last couple of years and it just shows that if you put it in you get it out.”

After the Black Forest Cup, Quinn intends to take a team to next month’s Monkstown Box Cup before the cadet championships in August.



CAMLOUGH ABC will host the annual Harry Shields boxing tourney in Carrickcruppen GFC hall on Friday.

Master of ceremonies will be local man Pat Maginn, while boxers from Camlough and further afield will step between the ropes.

Middleweight Fearghus Quinn, an Ulster Elite Championship finalist last year, tops the bill alongside up-and-coming Camlough fights Joe Finnegan, the Jones brothers - Tiernan and Caoilte - the improving Niall Craven, Adam Reavey, Jamie Murray AND AJ McGuinness.

The guests of honour will be the professional boxing brothers known as the ‘Upton Clan’ – Anto, Paul and Sonny – with the first bout at 8pm.


Tyrone teenager Jude Gallagher with the bronze medal won at the European Youth Championships last month


THE Youth Olympic Games take place in Buenos Aires in October, and Jude Gallagher would love to be part of an Irish team flying out to Argentina to compete at such a huge event.

First, though, the Two Castles teenager must win at least a bronze medal at the World Youth Championships in Hungary in August. And, after his recent performances at the Europeans in Italy, it would take a brave man to back against him.

Gallagher impressed in victory over Ukraine’s Ali Dagly and Armenian Seyran Yeghikyan en route to the semi-final, where he was on the receiving end of a hugely debatable decision against Hungary’s Atilla Bernth.

The Tyrone fighter dominated the first round, and looked to have done enough in the second and third too. Inexplicably though, the judges gave a unanimous decision to the Hungarian.

“I’ve watched it back a couple of times,” said the 16-year-old from Newtownstewart.

“I thought I won it easy enough. Even at the time I didn’t even think it was that close, but that’s the way it goes.

“You just have to get over it, there’s not much you can do about it. You can’t change it.”

Returning from such a major championships with a bronze medal is not to be sniffed at, however, and Gallagher can take the confidence from those performances into the Worlds.

In between, he could feature at the Harangey Cup in London before competing at the Monkstown Box Cup in Dublin towards the end of June.

The Irish U18 Championships also take place in July, so a busy couple of months lie ahead before he is Hungary-bound, with the Youth Olympics in Argentina the ultimate goal.

“I’d love to get to that but there’s a long way to go,” said Gallagher, whose dad John is one of the coaches heading to Bulgaria next week for the European Schoolboy Championships.

“I’ve boxed some of the best in Europe, but I suppose you have the likes of Cuba, Kazakhstan other Asian countries there too at the Worlds so you’re looking at different styles.

“You wouldn’t know what it would throw up.”

Also bound for the World Youth Championships are light-fly Daina Moorhouse, who dominated Russia’s Kseniia Beschastnova in her 48kg final last month, as well as Dean Clancy, Dearbhla Rooney, Evelyn Igharo and Lauren Kelly.

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