Aoife O’Rourke knew all too well she would have to dig deep to become a two-time Olympian.
The Team Ireland middleweight was aware Elzbieta Wojcik wouldn’t grant her easy passage into the European Games final or wave her onto the plane to Paris.
Wolick has stood between the Roscommon fighter and major medals and even a place at Tokyo Games previously and has always put up strong resistance.
As a result, history thought the Olympic Galway boxer she would have to go to war to get past the Pole and thus she was delighted to emerge from another battle with the spoils in Poland on Friday.
“I don’t know what to say, I’m lost for words, I’m absolutely over the moon,” said O’Rourke. “That was a tough, tough battle. No matter how many times I meet that girl it’s a battle every time, and it was to the wire today, so fair play to her as well. I’m delighted it was my day though and I got the ticket. No doubt she’ll qualify later in the year.”
When faced with such a foe, O’Rourke says you have to focus solely on producing.
“It wasn’t about the result, it was more about the performance … get in and do my best, that’s all anyone can do and if your best is good enough results will show, and I’m just delighted that all my hard work has paid off.
“We’ve been training really, really hard, we’ve had great training camps, and thanks to all the coaches and the rest of the team-mates, and our coaches at home in our clubs.”