Katie Taylor has been voted as the AIBA Elite Woman Boxer of the Year for a record third time thus confirming her status in a year which had already seen her take the World and Olympic titles.
The selection committee was chaired by AIBA President, Dr Ching-Kuo Wu and composed by AIBA Commission Chairpersons.
A second prestigious award came Ireland’s way when Michael Gallagher, from Omagh, was chosen as best Referee and Judge for the year, his second such award.
For Katie Taylor the award places her further ahead of any other female amateur boxer, past or present for the 26 years old Bray native , has now won this prestigious award for the third time in four years as well as four World crowns since India 2006, five successive European titles beginning with Norway 2005 and four European Union championships . In that period she has never been beaten in any championship competition, an amazing record.
In addition to taking the Gold medal in London 2012, she was also voted unanimously as outstanding female boxer in London with the international governing body adding at that time that Taylor was ‘“a worthy winner of the first ever women’s best boxer trophy” and “the decision was not decided on sentiment”.
Those of us who were privileged to witness her great quarter final victory over GB’s Natasha Jonas and semi-final success against Tajikistan’s Mavzuna Chorieva could readily identify with the AIBA’s description of her as a pioneer for women’s boxing who would take the sport “to new heights with her level of skills and dedication” . Though the final against Russia’s Sofya Ochigava was a tense ‘cat and mouse’ affair, Taylor rose to the occasion and came back from behind to take that elusive Olympic Gold before some 10,000 fans, the majority of whom were Irish, at the ExCeL.
Taylor had figured in arguably the best bout of the tournament – men or women – when she waged war with Great Britain’s Natasha Jonas, winning 26-15 in a furious bout which will live long in the memory of all who witnessed it.
Other serious competitors for the 2012 award included GB’s Nikki Adams, U.S Boxing’s Claressa Shields ( both, like Taylor, Olympic Gold medallists), China’s Ren CanCan, India’s Mery Kom and Russians Nadezda Torlopova and Ochigava.
“Katie has won the award three times now and that has never been done before. It’s a great honour and we’re absolutely delighted”, said coach and father, Peter Taylor.
The 2012 awards ceremony will be held at a banquet in Yerevan, Armenia, on December 7th during the AIBA World Youths Championships. Taylor first received the world female boxer of the year award in Moscow four years ago and then again in 2010 at the AIBA awards in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
In announcing the 2012 awards, the AIBA added: “We are proud at AIBA that Katie Taylor has graced the sport of boxing and we sincerely hope that she will be there in Rio 2016 to defend her title and once again showcase women’s boxing in all its splendour.”
“The International Boxing Association (AIBA) is delighted to reveal the list of winners for its 2012 AIBA Annual Awards Ceremony. The selection committee was chaired by AIBA President, Dr Ching-Kuo Wu and composed by AIBA Commission Chairpersons”.
The official announcement concluded : “The 2012 AIBA Annual Awards Ceremony will take place on 7 December in conjunction with the final banquet of the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships Yerevan 2012”.
AIBA Awards – 2012 :
Best Elite Men Boxer of the Year – Oleksandr USYK (Ukraine)
Best Elite Women Boxer of the Year – Katie TAYLOR (Ireland)
Best Referee & Judge of the Year – Michael GALLAGHER (Ireland)
Best Coach of the Year – David HALLOWAY (Great Britain)
Best Technical Official of the Year – Franco FALCINELLI (Italy)
Best WSB Boxer of the Year – Sergiy DEREVYANCHENKO (Ukraine)
Best WSB Referee & Judge of the Year – Jean-Robert LAINE (France)
Best WSB Coach of the Year – Francesco DAMIANI (Italy)
Best WSB Supervisor of the Year – Luiz BOSELLI (Brazil)
Best Sportsmanship of the Year – Garip ERCUYUMCU (Turkey)