Eight Irish boxers will finish out 2012 in the top 15 in the AIBA World Men’s & Women’s rankings.
Katie Taylor will enter her 7th year as AIBA World number one lightweight when the bells ring in the New Year at midnight on December 31st.
The Olympic, World and European champion has reigned supreme at the summit of the AIBA 60kg rankings table since she won her first AIBA World title in New Delhi, India in 2006.
She’s currently on 3,300 point, 1,000 points ahead of second place Sofya Ochigava of Russia.
World Ranking points for each Boxer are accumulated over a two (2) year “rolling” period from the Olympics, World Championships, Continental Championships and AIBA World Youth Championships.
The World Ranking points will be awarded for each event and maintained in full for four (4) events. From the 5th event onwards (up to a maximum of 7 events), any World Ranking point awarded will be decreased by 25% per event)
Taylor claimed a hat-trick of gold medals and a maximum return of rankings points at the expense of Ochigava in the last three ranking tournaments.
The Bray BC orthodox beat the Russian southpaw in the 2011 European Championships final (800 points), the 2012 AIBA World Championships final (1,200 points) and the 2012 Olympic final (1,300 points).
The only AIBA ranking tournament (for European women) in 2013 is the European Championships, which yields 800 points for a gold medal win.
Meanwhile, John Joe Nevin and Michael Conlan, silver and bronze medal winners at London 2012, are the highest AIBA ranked Irish male boxers.
Nevin (1,800 points) is in 3rd position in the bantamweight class, 150 points adrift of Cuba’s Jorge Lazaro Alvarez –Estrada, who he beat in the 2012 Olympic semi-final.
Conlan occupies 3rd position in the flyweight class on 1,400 points, while his fellow 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Paddy Barnes is in 7th place on 800 points in the light-flyweight class.
Conlan and Barnes finished third at the Olympic Games as they were beaten in their respective semi-finals by opponents, Cuba’s Eloy Robeisy Carranza-Ramirez and China’s Zou Shiming, that won gold.
Current European champions Ray Moylette (800 points) and Joe Ward (800 points) are ranked 8th and 10th in the light-welterweight and light-heavyweight classes.
Darren O’Neill, who captained the Irish team at the 2012 Olympics, is in 11th position in the middleweight class on 650 points.
Michaela Walsh (11th – 57kg) and Katie Rowland (19th – 51kg) earned 500 and 450 ranking points after winning double bronze at the 2011 AIBA World Women’s Youth Championships.
Willie McLaughlin is number 28 in the welterweight class.
The other Irish female boxers that are ranked include – Lauragh O’Neill (81kg – 23rd), Clare Grace (69kg – 27th) and Oliwia Samsanov (48kg – 30th).
Antrim’s Kurt Walker and Dublin’s John Joe McDonagh will be included in the AIBA World Senior ranking for the first time in January courtesy of claiming bronze and finishing in a top-eight position at the 2012 AIBA World Youth Championships in Armenia.
Walker earned 500 points by virtue of winning bronze – he was beaten by the eventual gold medallist Oliver Simpson in the semi-finals -, while McDonagh finished in 7th position and earned 200 points.
www.iaba.ie estimates that Walker will be in a top 20 position when the updated flyweight rankings are published and McDonagh will be in the top 30 in the light-heavyweight class.