Katie Taylor’s first Irish Championships opponent O’Keefe has her own RIO Dream

It is being billed as such an impossible mission that most suggest even Tom Cruise couldn’t do it.

However, Shauna O’Keefe dares to dream big ahead of her historic clash with Katie Taylor set for the National Stadium this Friday night.

After defeating Kayleigh Murrihy-McCormack in last weekends semi final the Tipperary 21 year old becomes the first ever fighter to challenge the World number 1 and Irish sporting icon for the right be deemed the best lightweight in Ireland.

London 2012 Olympic gold medal winner Taylor has four Irish crowns to her name but all were won via walkover, but O’Keefe will make the poster girl of female boxing and indeed female sport fight for the right to be deemed the best in the country this coming Friday.

It’s a tough ask, but her O’Keefe and her team are not entering the contest with a defeatist attitude. Indeed her coach Martin Fennessy told Bernard O’Neill and the Irish Independent that the young prospect has dreams beyond Taylor.

“Shauna has an Olympic dream like anyone else. She’s a tough, determined and focussed young boxer and she has great belief in herself,” he said.

“We’re excited to go into it and she deserves to be there on merit. She’s won an Intermediate title, she’s won the Celtic Box Cup. She won all four rounds last week

“We know it’s an honour to share a ring with an Olympic champion and we’re going up to give it our best shot. Our mind-set is that we are looking for a top performance from our girl and we’ll see where that takes us.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years