Baku Olympic Qualifier Draw – details of the Irish in action

The draw for the final AOB Olympic qualifier in Baku, Azerbaijanhas taken place.

Ireland has entered a four-strong team, with Darren O’Neill, Dean Gardiner, Dean Walsh, and Michael O’Reilly seeking to book their places at the Rio Olympiad and join team-mates Paddy Barnes, Brendan Irvine, Mick Conlan, David Oliver Joyce, aSteven Donnelly, and Joe Ward at the Games.

Heavyweight O’Neill is first up for the Irish and fights on Saturday against Sweden’s Mustafa El Molla.

Sunday sees Walsh and Gardiner in action having received byes, Wexford light welterweight Walsh faces Ayrin Ismetov from Bulgaria in the Round of 32, while Tipp super heavy ‘Breakfast’ Gardiner will fight the winner of India’s Satish Kumar and Tongan Manase Raikadroka in the Last 16

Portlaoise middleweight O’Reilly has been seeded #1 and takes on the winner of the bout between Cypriot Andrea Kokkinos and Belorussian Vitali Bandarenka on Monday

Walsh and O’Reilly require top five finishes in Baku to book their spots in Brazil, while O’Neill and Gardiner need to win their categories outright.

375 boxers from 92 countries will compete in Azerbaijan.

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: