Emmet Brennan got Ireland’s Olympic qualifying campaign off to the perfect start.
The Dub was the first of the 13 man squad to fight in a competition with Tokyo places up for grabs and ensured a happy beginning to what should be an exciting week.
Brennan moved to within two wins of a place on the plane to Tokyo 2020 by securing a stoppage victory at the Copper Box Arena in London.
The former super middleweight proved too strong for Bosnian Radenko Tomic in the light heavyweight round of 32.
The Docklands fighter dominated the first round, but added range and rhythm to his raw aggression in the second forcing a stoppage with 59 seconds of the second remaining.
🥊 RESULT 🥊— IABA (@IABABOXING) March 15, 2020
The perfect start to the tournament for Team Ireland as Dublin’s Emmet Brennan gets a stoppage win v 🇧🇦!
He has now booked his place in the Last 16 v 🇨🇭 on St.Patricks Day!
Well done Emmet!🥊🇮🇪#IABA #RoadToTokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/buGxRveIgY
Neither fighter really managed much clean work in the opening stanza, but Brennan did appear to be forcing the action.
He made the Bosnian look like he was searching respite on the back foot rather than using a box and move tactic.
However two left hooks apart he the Dubliner didn’t land too much clean.
The reigning Irish light heavyweight champ found his range in the second round and really began to inflict damage on his foe.
With space to find some shots he began to take the wind out of the Kosovo-born puncher’s sails. A brilliantly timed straight right into the ribs forced Radenko to the canvas temporarily, Brennan sensed blood and went for the kill.
Another body shot and the blue corner fighter was reintroduced to the floor, he rose to his feet but the referee waved the fight off.
Brennan will face Swiss Uke Smajli in the next round and on St Patrick’s Day. He will fancy his chances – and victory would give him two chances at Tokyo. An open division, it looks like it would be Armenian Euro Games bronze medallist Gor Nersesyan first then, if needed, a winnable box-off.