Team Ireland arrive in Bulgaria and are ready for European Championships

Ireland’s seven-strong squad arrived in Samokov, Bulgaria this afternoon ahead of the opening bell for the 37-nation European Men’s Elite Championships.

Click here for official website. Boxing begins at 5pm (Irish time) on Friday.

The 41st edition of the tournament is acting as a qualifier for October’s AIBA World Elite Men’s Championships in Doha, Qatar which is a qualifier for the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Three members of the Irish squad for Samokov 2015 have claimed medals from the last three editions of the European Men’s Elite Championships, with Joe Ward, Irish captain Darren O’Neill and London 2012 bronze medallist Michael Conlan securing one gold and two silver medals between them since 2010.

Ward, who is signed with AIBA Pro Boxing (APB), is aiming to become the first Irish male boxer to win two European gold medals in the light-heavy weight class in Bulgaria.

Adam Nolan, along with O’Neill and Conlan a London 2012 Olympian, Myles Casey, who won the first ever European Games bout in Baku, Azerbaijan in June, Dean Walsh and Dean Gardiner will also line out for Ireland in Samokov.

The top six boxers in each weight class in Bulgaria qualify for the AIBA World Men’s Elite Championships in Doha.

John Joe Nevin and Jason Quigley, who have since switched codes, won double gold for Ireland at the 2013 European Elite Men’s Championships in Minsk.

Irish squad
52kg Myles Casey (St Francis)
56kg Michael Conlan (Clonard ABC)
64kg Dean Walsh (St Joesphs/St Ibars)
69kg Adam Nolan (Bray)
81kg Joe Ward (APB)
91kg Darren O’Neill (Paulstown)
91kg+ Dean Gardiner (Clonmel)

Team Manager: Peter O’Donnell
Coaches: Billy Walsh, Zaur Antia and Eddie Bolger
Physiotherapist: Julianne Ryan
Sports Psychologist: Gerry Hussey
Performance Analyst: Alan Swanton
Cuts Man: Dr John Haughey

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