Seconds Out: Raphoe to welcome English opponents for annual show

Some top quality action unfolded at Belfast’s Balmoral Hotel on Friday and Saturday night as a County Antrim team went toe-to-toe with some top European talent. Boxers from Turin, Naples, Greece and Barcelona were in town for the schoolboy international, with the visitors coming out on top 7-5 on the first night before Antrim edged home 3-2 on Saturday.
Friday night results - J63kg: A Ni Yoel (Naples) RSC3 L Hughes (Dockers); Y52kg: E Iomnhe (Greece) 5-0 P Downey (St John Bosco); Y56kg: N Konjyantiomes (Greece) 4-1 E Neeson, D Saha Vincinzo (Naples) 4-1 A Thompson (Spartans); Y60kg: J McConnell (Holy Trinity) 5-0 V Famoso (Naples), S Gadalo RSC3 M Doherty (Clonard), C Fisher (Holy Trinity) 5-0 A Di Santis (Naples); JY60/63kg: M Miaxaha (Greece) 4-1 R Johnstone (Clonard); Y64kg: J McArdle (Ardoyne) 5-0 L Manuel (Naples); Y64kg: L Z Eddine Choni (Barcelona) 4-1 T McCann (St Paul’s), P Fiorentino 4-1 K Camacho (Barcelona); Y69kg: C Donnelly (Rathfriland) 3-2 L De Chiara (Naples), R Trainor (Ardoyne) 3-2 A Villa Beltran (Barcelona) – Antrim 5 Europe 7.
Saturday night results - Youth: V Famoso (Naples) 5-0 E Eonais (Greece); Y56kg: C Labropolos (Greece) 3-2 T Hanna (Townland), V Della Gatta (Naples) 5-0 E Neeson (Pegasus); Y60kg: J McConnell (Antrim) 5-0 G Salzillo (Naples), Y Angeloni (Naples) 5-0 M Bonovas (Greece); 64kg: J McArdle (Antrim) 5-0 P Fiorento (Torino/DMS); Y64kg: T McCann (St Paul’s) 5-0 K Camacho (Barcelona); Y64kg: L Manuel 5-0 Z Eddine Choni (Barcelona) – Antrim 3 Europe 2
Neil Loughran

RAPHOE BC, Donegal’s club of the year, will host its 31st annual tournament in the Deele Sports Pavilion on Saturday.

A highly-rated Paddy Brennan Boxing Academy selection from Tenbury Wells, England provide the opposition.

Matchmakers Gary McCullagh (Raphoe BC) and Shaun Finn (Worchester City BC) have pencilled in 14 star-studded contests in weights ranging from 46kg to 91kg featuring Irish and English champions.

Over the years, the show has become one of the highlights in the Donegal boxing calendar.

The opening bout brings together Raphoe’s 46kg schoolboy puncher Ryley Doherty and Tenbury’s Shane Jones. Both young men have had a busy season and it’s anyone’s guess what the outcome will be.

At 64kg, explosive Strabane-based Daire Feeney locks horns with the much talked about Worchester southpaw Demetrius Aceto.

Feeney will fancy his chances here as he’s recorded wins in his previous four outings this season, including an impressive victory over Hull’s Jobran Khan two weeks ago.

At 66kg, hammer-handed 9-County champ Liam McMonagle is paired with Adam McDaid in a contest which might not go the distance as both fighters carry lots of power in their punches.

Raphoe’s long-serving Danny Duggan meets Londoner Thomas Hunter (Finchley BC). Both seasoned punchers have a wealth of experience in a hard contest to call.

Lisburn’s flamboyant Thomas Orr faces the rugged Amalia Davis and his club-mate, schoolboy starlet Lewis Nelson, is paired with Tenbury student Ryan Jones.

Also on the night, Cookstown’s dynamic duo of livewire lightweight Teo Alin and the durable Charles McDonagh face stiff opposition in the shape of Anton Assion and James Scarlet.

Raphoe’s much-travelled Orin McDermott is paired with Patrick Stokes at welter and his team-mate Paul Darby crosses swords with Jesse Brandon at middleweight.

In what has the makings of a mouth-watering heavyweight punch up, Michael McConigley (Illies GG) is in against the power-punching Tenbury steeplejack Jack Bannister in what could be an inside the distance war.

The three English clubs travelling to Raphoe to represent the Brennan Boxing Academy are Worchester City ABC from the Midlands, Baker Street ABC, Western Counties and Finchley ABA from London.

A Channel 4 television crew will accompany the team from the start of their journey at Birmingham Airport on Friday until they return to England on November 18.

Peter O’Donnell of Raphoe BC said: “I know Paddy Brennan well and he is doing a first-class job in helping young people turn their lives around.

“This latest visit is a part of an exchange which has been going on for the past five or six years and it is always nice to see fighters coming over from England. It will also be an opportunity for us to showcase what we have and to highlight the Raphoe Boxing Club.”


DONEGAL’S Matthew McCole picked up the best boxer award at the Irish senior championship finals night last Friday.

The Illies GG fighter claimed an impressive victory over Olympic’s Martin Sammon to land the welterweight crown, while fellow Donegal man Dean Clancy took the bantamweight title with a unanimous decision win against Riverstown’s Jamie Griffin.

There was disappointment for Emerald’s Caoimhin Ferguson as he came out on the wrong side of a 3-2 split against Cameron Bennett (Swords). Fellow Ulster fighters Teo Alin (Cookstown), Siobhan McKenna (Holy Family), Emma Feeney (Virginia) and Thomas Maughan (Cavan) also lost out in their deciders.


Ring ABC's Eva Gallagher (red) and Chloe McGonigle (St Bridget's) had the crowd on their feet after a brilliant fight at the Maldron Hotel in Derry on Friday night. Picture by Peter McKane


THERE was standing room only at the Maldron Hotel last Friday as the County Derry boxing team took defeated a Tyrone/Fermanagh select 7-3.

Luke Sharkey (Springtown) came out on the wrong side of a 3-2 split against Cookstown’s Finn Kirkpatrick, while newcomer Eva Gallagher (Ring) and Chloe McGonigle (St Bridget’s) produced a thrilling contest that brought the crowd to its feet. The Ring boxer got the nod from the judges on a split decision.

All-Ireland champion Adam McIvor (Oakleaf) was relentless on his way to victory over Omagh’s Lorcan Rogers, while Fionn Duffy (St Joseph’s) also caught the eye on the Derry team.

His contest with Shea McAleer (Omagh Boxing Academy) was another great scrap, with the pair going toe-to-toe before Duffy had his hand raised.

Tiernan McCormick (Moneyglass) and Tiernan Glennon (St Joseph’s) were victorious over Seamus Maughan (Cookstown) and Paddy McShane (Letterkenny), who was guesting for the Tyrone/Fermanagh team.

Peter Clark (Errigal) was too strong for Cameron Suttie (Erne) and, at 63kg, Oakleaf’s Joe Harkin had to battle hard to get the decision against Harris Crowley (Erne).

Neil McAllister (St John’s) gave away some weight to Clonoe’s Michael Conlon but was a worthy winner in the end after boxing sharply in the second and third rounds.

At elite level, Dominic Bradley (Errigal) and Cillian Boyce (Letterkenny) showcased their skills in a brilliant exhibition bout.

Sickness forced Irish champion Ethan McCaul (St John’s) to withdraw from his scheduled showdown with Raphoe’s Liam McMonigle at 64kg.

The County Derry Board also hosted their annual awards and presentations on the night. Former European champion Charlie Nash and current professionals Connor Coyle and Sean McGlinchey were special guests, and the board thanked everyone involved in the organisation of this year’s show including sponsors, medics from St John’s Ambulance and the boxers from Tyrone/Fermanagh.

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