Ireland’s 18 strong team for the EUBC European Schoolboys Championships have arrived in Keszthely, Hungary where the event starts on Monday.
Once again Ireland will be hoping for a few medals from this the toughest of all European schoolboys events so let us take a look at what the event hodls in store for the Irish and who are the main competitors.
A reminder that Keszthely hosted the 2011 EUBC European Junior Continental Championships, and the 2013 EU Women’s Championships, and the picturesque town, located off the coast of the Balaton Lake, is a very popular and inviting location for boxing events.
The Tension and the Drama:
Boxers who were born in 2000 and in 2001 are eligible to compete in the forthcoming EUBC European Schoolboys Championships.
Most of the participants will be competing in their first ever international competition outside of their own country, and predicting winners from each weight classes is a nigh on impossible task for many boxing enthusiasts because of this fact.
So many aspects are integral to success in a tournament like this, as people wonder how the young hopes will prepare for their first ever international championships, and how they will handle their emotions and keep their form during the entire event.
Ones to watch in the event – apart from the Irish team:
The host nation Hungary will be looking towards to their top youth talent for gold medal success, in 14-year-old Tibor Barbosu, who has won several national level events over the last two years.
Barbosu won the best boxer trophy at the 2013 Schoolboys National Championships, and at the 2013 Schoolboys National Olympiad, which shows his undoubted potential as one to watch in this tournament.
Russia’s Edgard Tcambov won the last edition of these championships in Dublin at the age of 13, and he now returns to the continental event in Hungary.
The Russian boxer competed at the 50 kg weight class in 2013, and will fight at the 62 kg weight category this time around.
There is also a very strong English team for this event.
For boxing fans, this tournament will be a chance to see the stars of the future early, as all of the older schoolboys who were born in 2000 will be eligible to compete in the upcoming 2015 AIBA Junior World Boxing Championships.
Facts of the event:
A record number of 203 boxers from 27 nations have registered to take part in the event in Keszthely.
Joining to the hosts, Ireland, Ukraine and Russia will all be competing with the maximum number of eighteen boxers.
Montenegro and Kosovo are debuting in this tournament.
The participating nations of the competition: Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Turkey, Ukraine and Wales.
The official weight classes in this age group: 38.5, 40, 41.5, 43, 44.5, 46, 48, 50, 52, 54, 6, 59, 62, 65, 68, 72, 76 and +76 kg.
History of the event:
The first edition of the championships was held in Rome in 2003, where 15 to 16-year-old athletes fought for the medals.
Following that competition, EUBC decided to schedule the event for the 13 to 14-year-old boxers.
The EUBC European Schoolboys Continental Championships returns to Hungary ten years after the city of Siofok hosted the competition in 2004.
The Russian Boxing Federation have been very active in this age group, as they hosted the continental event in Tver in 2005, in Grozniy in 2011, and in Anapa in 2009 and in 2012.
The 2012 squad secured Ireland’s greatest haul at this level after taking home ten medals from Anapa..
Oliver McCarthy, James McGivern and Michael Nevin won gold and John Sweeney took home silver. James Clarke, Nevan Fannon, Darragh Murray, Brett McGinty, Kieran Molloy and Francie Stokes claimed bronze.
Ireland finished in second spot in the medals table behind Russia in Anapa.
Aaron McKenna, Jordan Myers, Barry McReynolds, Sean Whelan, twin brothers Jamie and Jason Harty, Paul Ryan,Dominic Bradley, Leon Gallagher and Jordan Joyce won two gold, five silver and three bronze medals at the IABA hosted at the 19-nation 2013 European Championships at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin.
Ireland finished in 3rd spot in the medals table.
And finally a reminder of the Irish squad for Keszthely:
Irish squad 12th European Schoolboy Champions Keszthely, Hungary
38.5kg Brandon McCarthy (St Michael’s Athy)
40kg Luke Hurley (Tramore)
41.5kg Brandon O’Brien (The Borough)
43kg Danny Reilly (St Brigids Kildare)
44.5kg Lorcan Hurley (Tramore)
46kg Barry Reynolds (Holy Trinity)
48kg Michael Delaney (Olympic)
50kg James Mongan (Bay City)
52kg Conal Ross (Dockers)
54kg Edgar Vuskans (Glengormley)
56kg Pierce O’Leary (Docklands)
59kg Sean Dempsey (Realt na Mara)
62kg Kane Tucker (St John Bosco )
65kg Nathan Rogers (Neilstown)
68kg Tommy Duffy (Loughglynn BC)
72kg Dylan Cadwell (Portlaoise)
76kg Michael Walsh (Holy Family )
76+kg Tom Gavin (Edenmore)