The Bracken BC slugger overcame a huge reach disadvantage in a bruising encounter with talented defending champion Brian Kennedy to take the light heavyweight crown.
Probably the most pro-styled fighter at the National Stadium, O’Reilly repeatedly walked through the jab of the St Mary’s Daingean boxer and landed numerous huge shots which caught the eye of the judges and took the wind from the sails of the Offaly teen.
A brilliant clash of styles, O’Reilly took the contest on a unanimous decision after a huge final round, much to the delight of the huge Balbriggan crowd in attendance – which included current pro Ger ‘Crank’ Whitehouse.
Afterwards O’Reilly told Irish-Boxing.com that “I started poorly enough but I made up for it in the second two rounds.”
“I started slow enough in the first round and I knew I had to pick it up – so I just got closer to him in the second and got busier, hit him more to the body, hooks to the head also.”
“Third round, in me head it was one-all so it was all or nothing. I just gave it me all in the last round, particularly in the last ten seconds, I don’t think I’ve ever thrown so much punches in ten seconds!”
A fascinating fight to watch, Kennedy visibly slowed as the bout wore on, feeling the effect of O’Reilly’s heavy blows, and the Fingal fighter noted described how “the more I hit him to the body, his legs went, then he started to fatigue a bit so I took advantage and unloaded more powerful shots on him.”
Next up for O’Reilly is the World Youth Championships in St Petersburg, a return to Russia where he narrowly missed out on a medal at the 2012 European Schoolboys.