The young Irish team expecting to represent their country at the World Youth Championships next month have been told they won’t be traveling to Spain.
The underage starlet’s training was interrupted on Saturday and they were informed a team won’t be sent to La Nucia to box in a tournament set to play out between the 15th and 26th of November.
Irish-boxing.com understands the teens were sent home before the first of two planned sessions were fully completed as they were told the IABA will be boycotting the tournament.
There has yet to be official confirmation of a boycott but the team was informed the decision was made as a result of Russian boxers being permitted to box in the continental tournament.
Earlier this month the IBA president indicated that Russian and Belarusian boxers would be allowed return to international competition with immediate effect – and the IABA is set to object in boycott form.
The IABA has also recently spoken out about the ‘illegal’ suspension of the Ukrainian Boxing Federation from the world governing body, and it’s entirely possible that also had an influence on the decision. Although, it has since been suggested a Ukrainian team may compete in Spain.
It’s also understood that the Team, whose selection was never officially confirmed but was believed to be made up of recent Irish Youth champions, was last week told that due to financial issues only half the team would compete at the World Youth Championships. Finance was also quoted as an issue ahead of the European Schools games but a full team was eventually sent and 14 medals were secured.
As it stands, no Irish team will compete at the World Youth Games. It remains unsure if the boycott will extend to senior teams and particularly the select currently preparing for the Elite Female European Championships.
The IABA did send a youth team to the European Youth Championships earlier this year and they won 3 gold, 1 silver, and 4 bronze in Bulgaria.
Georgia McGovern, Patsy Joyce, Katie O’Keefe, Winnie McDonagh, Laura Moran, Bobbi Flood, Dearbhla Tinnelly, and Cliona Darcy all won medals at that tournament and there were hopes of an equal if not increased medal haul in Spain.
Irish teams have won an impressive 50 medals from major international tournaments since the turn of the year with the European Junior team enjoying the most recent success. The under-16 select won four bronze, four silver and two gold in Italy last week.