1989: Following ‘Fight of the Year’ losses to Fidel Bassa in 1987 and 1988, Larne flyweight Dave ‘Boy’ McAuley won the IBF World title with a shock victory over Duke McKenzie at the Wembley Arena. Fifteen months out of the ring and a huge underdog, McAuley showed no signs of rust, hurting his man in the first en-route to a deserved points win (115-113 x2, 117-110). McAuley would defend the title an impressive five times.
2014: Andy Lee, dropping briefly down to light middleweight, saved his career again with a come-from-behind knockout again John Jackson. Down in the first and being swarmed by the Virgin Islander, Limerick’s Lee unleashed a frightening right-hook in the fifth round to score a one-punch stoppage victory and put himself in the frame for a World title shot.
2001: Arklow’s James Moore roared back in the final round to overcome Turkey’s Firat Karagollu via countback (+24:24 118:82) to guarantee a bronze medal at the World Championships in Belfast. The welterweight captained the Irish team and beat Latvia’s Aleksandrs Sotniks and Lithuania’s Darius Jasevicius in the preliminaries before defeating future World title challenger Leonard Bundu in the Round of 16. Moore would lose in the semi-finals to silver medalist Anthony Thompson of the USA.
2014: Katie Taylor defeated recent conqueror Estelle Mosselly to claim her fifth European title. At the Championships in Bucharest, Taylor cruised into the final with wins over Swiss boxer Sandra Brugger, a stoppage over Romania’s Ioana Mera, and a semi-final victory over Bulgarian Denitsa Eliseyeva
2013: On a day where Ireland won four* semi-finals out of four, Belfast boys Paddy Barnes and Mick Conlan guaranteed themselves European silver with victory in Minsk, Belarus. Barnes defeated Wales’s Ashley Williams and Hungary’s Istvan Ungvari before besting reigning champ Salman Alizade of Azerbaijan to claim silver. The light flyweight was unfortunately forced to cede a walkover in his final with Russia’s David Ayrapetyan due to a nose injury. On his route to the flyweight final, Conlan dispatched Armenia’s Narek Abgaryan, stopped home fighter Sergey Loban before edging out Russian Ovik Ogannisyan in the semi. Ireland’s only ever male World championships gold medalist would lose his final to longtime rival Andrew Selby.
*John Joe Nevin and Jason Quigley’s tournaments will be profiled tomorrow
2006: Alanna Audley-Murphy defeated Spain’s Silvia Leoil by the old 15 point rule in the light welterweight quarter-finals of the inaugural Women’s EU Championships in Porto Torres, Italy. The win secured bronze for the Belfast boxer who lost out in the semis to England’s Amanda Coulson. On the same day, reigning European champ Katie Taylor missed out on a medal after losing out to Turkey’s Gulsum Tatar.
2008: Popular Belfast welterweight Neil ‘Sinky’ Sinclair travelled to Rome to take on Danielle Petrucci for the Italian’s EU title. The former British champ was expected to be cannon-fodder following Petrucci’s recent destruction of Craig Watson, but ‘Sinky’ rolled back the years and gave ‘Bucetto’ a scare in a close points loss.