Conlan: I don’t know what direction Irish boxing would take if Walsh and Antia left

Micheal Conlan claims Billy Walsh and Zaur Antia are the back bone of Irish-boxing and he fears for the sport on the Island if both were to leave.

The recent European Championship gold medal winner and Rio 2016 hopeful told Balls.ie that both along with his father John Conlan played a massive part in developing him into a World class operator and claims it would be a massive loss to the sport if both were to leave.

Kevin Byrne broke news of Walsh’s possible departure from the IABA and the High Performance Unit he has transformed into a medal making machine yesterday.

It’s said Walsh is on the verge of taking over the USA Women’s Olympic team and is unhappy with structures within the organisation. Irish fight fans and sport fans in general have reacted in shock to the news and Conlan was equally as stunned speaking today.

“It’s a big loss if it happens, especially before Rio. I only found out from the paper so I was quite surprised when I saw it!

“He has been a very important part of the development. Him and Zaur [Antia] together make an amazing team. I don’t know what direction Irish boxing will go if either of them left.”

London 2012 medal winner Conlan, who won boxer of the tournament in the recent European Championships claims both would be hard to replace.

“I don’t think there is many coaches in the country with their knowledge. Billy and Zaur have had a big effect on my career.They have helped me, along with my father, turn into a world class fighter. I would not like to see either of them leave.

“I think they are the backbone of Irish boxing.”

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Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years