IABA Press Officer Bernard O’Neil
Joe Ward gave himself a St Patrick’s Day to remember after claiming gold and the Best Technical Boxer award at the 39th Chemistry Cup in Germany this afternoon.
The Moate BC southpaw, the current European champion, beat Russian number one Egor Mekhontsev 20-14 to finish on top of the light-heavyweight podium.
Today’s victory against the 2009 AIBA World Senior champion and two-time European gold medalist was Ward’s fourth in four days in Halle.
The 18-year-old – a gold medal winner at the 2009 and 2010 AIBA World Junior and Youth Championships, was 7-5 and 14-11 up at the end of rounds one and two and found the target with a stunning left hook in the third en route to victory.
“Joe was magnificent. Four wins in four days speaks for itself, He went in there full of confidence and he won. This was the bout (the final) he wanted out here. He wanted to meet this lad and he got his wish against a world class opponent,” said Irish team manager Des Donnelly.
Ireland’s total medal haul from the 20-nation tournament is one gold and four bronze.
Paddy Barnes, Michael Conlan, Adam Nolan and David Oliver Joyce also finished in podium positions.
Ireland, who are preparing for next month’s crucial Olympic qualifiers in Trabzon, Turkey, were using a nine-man team in Halle.
The Irish squad are due to arrive home via Dublin Airport at 11.35am tomorrow.
39th Chemistry Cup Halle, Germany March 14th/18th
March 14th Preliminaries
75Kg: Darren O’Neill (Ireland) beat Andrei Juratoni (Romania) 16-13
64Kg: Ross Hickey (Ireland) lost to Artem Harutyunyan (Germany) 9-21
69Kg: Adam Nolan (Ireland) beat Vasili Belous (Moldova) 10-9
81Kg: Joe Ward (Ireland) beat Victor Cotujanskii (Moldova) 14-5
March 15th Q/Finals
52Kg: Michael Conlan (Ireland) beat Erdal Inanci (Turkey) 16-10
60Kg: David Oliver Joyce (Ireland) beat Artur Brill (Germany) 16-16 c/b (no countback score available)
75Kg: Darren O’Neill (Ireland) lost to Danabek Suzhanov (Kazakhstan) 9-14
49Kg: Paddy Barnes (Ireland) beat Zhonglin Wu (China) 20-12
69Kg: Adam Nolan (Ireland) beat Koeroglu Abdulkadir (Turkey) 18-12
91Kg: Steven Ward (Ireland) lost to Xuanxuan Wang (China) 9-16
81Kg: Joe Ward (Ireland) beat Elshod Rasulov (Uzbekistan) 20-9
91+Kg: Con Sheehan (Ireland) lost to Zhilie Zhang (China) 9-14
March 16th S/Finals
52Kg: Michael Conlan (Ireland) lost to Serdamba Purevdorj (Mongolia) 15-15 c/b 46-50
60Kg: David Oliver Joyce (Ireland) lost to Robson Conceicao (Brazil) 10-17
49Kg: Paddy Barnes (Ireland) lost to Hamza Touba (Germany) 12-15
69Kg: Adam Nolan (Ireland) lost to Arayk Marutjan (Germany) 14-21
81Kg: Joe Ward (Ireland) beat Carlos Gongora (Ecuador) 15-8
March 17th final
81Kg: Joe Ward (Ireland) beat Egor Mekhonstev (Russia) 20-14
49Kg: Paddy Barnes (Holy Family)
52Kg: Michael Conlan (St John Bosco)
60Kg: David Oliver Joyce (St Michael’s Athy)
64Kg: Ross Hickey (Grangecon)
69Kg: Adam Nolan (Bray)
75Kg: Darren O’Neill (Paulstown)
81Kg: Joe Ward (Moate)
91Kg: Steven Ward (Monkstown, Antrim)
91+Kg: Con Sheehan (Clonmel)
Team Manager: Des Donnelly
Coaches: Billy Walsh, Zuar Antia, Jimmy Halpin, Eddie Bolger
Physio: Conor McCarthy
Strength & Conditioning: John Cleary
R&J: Al Morris