August 11, 2015
August 11, 2015
Qais Ashfaq

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GB BOXING have continued their flying start at the European Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria, winning all seven of their bouts so far, while Ireland have had mixed fortunes.

Troy Williamson, Qais Ashfaq and Pat McCormack have all progressed to the quarter finals for GB after their impressive wins yesterday [August 10].

In his second contest of the tournament, middleweight Williamson overcame the tough Damian Biacho Bolequia, outworking the Spaniard over three to win on all three judges’ scorecards and will box Italian Salvatore Cavallaro in Wednesday’s quarter finals

Commonwealth Games silver medallist and European Games bronze medallist Qais Ashfaq won his first bout of the Championships, earning a unanimous decision over Albania’s Krenar Zeneli and will now face world-ranked number two, Ukrainian Mykola Butsenko.

National light-welterweight champion Pat McCormack earned an impressive win over former European champion Fatih Keles, of Turkey. McCormack now faces Johann Orozco Ojeda of Spain in the quarter finals.

Muhammad Ali fights in his first bout of the Championships later today while Joshua Buatsi and Joe Cordina will both be looking to add to their earlier wins.

Ireland’s Michael Conlan and Dean Walsh also advanced to the quarter-finals but their captain, Darren O’Neil, came up short.

Bantamweight Conlan, who won gold at London 2012 at flyweight, beat France’s Anthony Brett on points, constantly switch-hitting throughout the contest.

Light-welterweight Walsh was in deep with Romania’s Florentin Niculescu but did enough to win on every scorecard.

O’Neil was not so successful in his second bout however, losing to No 1 seed and World silver medallist Evgeny Tischenko of Russia, whom O’Neil had previously beaten in 2010.

Adam Nolan and Joe Ward face their second bouts of the competition later today.

The European Championships is part of the qualification pathway for Rio 2016 and boxers that finish in the top six in their weight class in Sofia will secure a place at the AIBA World Championships in Doha in September 2015, which is a qualifying event for next year’s Olympic Games.