Brett McGinty and Michael Nevin are two world class boxers declares coach Pat Ryan

New Irish Elite champion Caoimhin Hynes celebrates with his Holy Trinity team, Michael Hawkins, Harry Hawkins, Peter Brady and Michael Hawkins Jnr, at the National Boxing Stadium in Dublin
Bernard O'Neill

BRETT McGinty is one of Ireland's top young boxers, according to Portlaoise BC coach Pat Ryan. the former president of the Irish Athletic Boxing Association.

Donegal-native McGinty, who boxes out of Derry's Oakleaf BC, dropped a unanimous decision to Michael Nevin in a thrilling middleweight final at the National Stadium in Dublin on Saturday night.

But Nevin had to get off the floor before his hand was raised in victory after being dropped by a flashing left hook from McGinty in the first round.

“It was a top class final between two excellent boxers,” said Ryan.

“Michael and Brett are two world class young boxers. These young men are the future of our sport.

“Michael boxed excellently and we're absolutely thrilled to have won two (Wayne Kelly also won) titles at the National Stadium."

Meanwhile, Antrim's Michaela Walsh, the current EU Elite champion, dethroned defending feather champion Dervla Duffy on a unanimous decision and Holy Trinity BC light-heavy Caoimhin Hynes beat Brian Kennedy to claim the vacant 81kg belt.

Ceire Smith made a welcome return to the home of Irish boxing to add another notch to her impressive CV and Dean Gardiner beat defending champion Martin Keenan in the super-heavy final.

Kieran Molloy ended over half a century of waiting on an emotional night for Galway's Oughterard on Saturday..

The Connaught welter, a World Junior medallist, beat Drogheda's Eugene McKeever on a unanimous decision in a thrilling 69kg final to claim the club's first Elite belt since their foundation 56 years ago.

Molloy also scooped the Best Male Boxer award on a big night for welters as Offaly's Grainne Walsh secured gold and the inaugural Jimmy Magee Best Female Boxer award in the same weight.

“Eugene showed a lot of heart tonight and I respect him. He's a great fighter as well, but I knew it was my time, said the new champion.

“I feel very comfortable in the welterweight category.

“My ultimate goal is to keep this up and qualify for the Olympics. That's the dream at the end of the day and hopefully, it will be a reality soon.”

Walsh, meanwhile, out worked and out punched former World Junior champion and Olympic Youth finalist Ciara Ginty to successfully defend her title.

The Sparticus BC fighter is keeping her fingers crossed that welter will be named as one of the two new Olympic weights from women with an announcement imminent on which limits will be added to fly, light and middle for Tokyo 2020.

“I was a bit slow at times but I'm just delighted that the work has paid off. It's not really a distraction (waiting to see if welter becomes an Olympic weight), she said.

“I try to perform the best every time I'm in the ring. As soon as it's announced it will be a weight off my shoulders. I'm building into the weight so I'm hoping that the news comes soon.”

World Elite finalist Kellie Harrington showed considerable class to subdue a potential ambush by ex-European Youth champion Amy Broadhurst and win her eight belt

She's now eyeing up Ken Egan's and Jim O'Sullivan's record as the only two athletes to win ten belts: “Noel and Adam (coaches) had the tactics spot on, so I listened to what they were telling me to do and it worked, she said.

“I hope to go to Tokyo (Olympics) but I want 10 senior titles. Long term, my goal is Tokyo, but for now, ten national titles and Tokyo.”

National Elite Championships 2018

February 24th

Finals (6.15pm)

48kg: Shannon Sweeney (St Anne's) beat Carol Coughlan (Monkstown, Dublin) 3-2

81+kg: Nell Fox (Rathkeale) bt Lisa Browne (Aglish) 4-0

54kg: Lauren Hogan (St Brigid's, Edenderry) bt Amanda Loughlin (St Michael's, Dublin) 5-0

51kg: Ceire Smith (Virginia/DCU) bt Niamh Early (Ryston) 5-0

60kg: Kellie Harrington (St Mary's, Dublin) bt Amy Broadhurst (Dealgan) 5-0

57kg: Michaela Walsh (Monkstown, Antrim) bt Dervla Duffy (Mulhuddart) 5-0

91kg: Kiril Afansev (Smithfield) bt Kevin Sheehy (St Francis) 5-0

91+kg: Dean Gardiner (Clonmel) bt Martin Keenan (Rathkeale) 5-0

69kg: Grainne Walsh (Sparticus) bt Ciara Ginty (Geesala) 5-0

69kg: Kieran Molloy (Oughterard) bt Eugene McKeever (Holy Family, Drogheda) 5-0

75kg: Michael Nevin (Portlaoise) bt Brett McGinty (Oakleaf) 4-1

49kg: Conor Jordan (St Aidan's) bt Ricky Nesbitt (Carrickmacross) 4-1

56kg: Evan Metcalfe (Hyland Academy) bt Thomas McCarthy (Setanta) 3-2

64kg: Wayne Kelly (Portlaoise) bt Caoimhin Ferguson (Clonard, Antrim) 5-0

60kg: George Bates (St Mary's, Dublin) bt Francis Cleary (Ballina) 5-0

81kg: Caoimhin Hynes (Holy Trinity) bt Brian Kennedy (St Mary's, Daingean) 3-2

Jimmy Magee Best Female Boxer: Grainne Walsh

President's Cup Best Male Boxer: Kieran Molloy

52kg: Conor Quinn (Clonard. Antrim) Walkover

64kg: Joanne Lambe (Carrickmacross) Walkover

75kg: Aoife Burke (St Mary's. Dublin) Walkover

81kg: Aoife O'Rourke (Castlerea) Walkover

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