AmateurHeadline News

Controversy as Irish have to settle for two silvers at World Junior Championships

By Bernard O’Neill – IABA Press Officer

Eamer Coughlan and Paddy Donovan had to settle for silver from two all southpaw battles at the AIBA World Junior Championships finals in St Petersburg, Russia today.

Cork-born Coughlan dominated the last two rounds against Illia Popov, but the back-pedalling Russian light-fly, who was ticked off by the ref for not boxing and not engaging in the third, was very surprisingly awarded a unanimous decision (30-27,30-27,29-28).

The first round was close. Coughlan, whose style is similar to two-time Olympic medallist Paddy Barnes – high guard, a constant ball of aggression moving forward – piled on the pressure in the second and had his retreating opponent in all sorts of trouble near the end of the frame.

Popov was on his bike again in the third, with Coughlan walking him down into every corner of the ring, but the decision went against the Riverstown BC man.

Limerick lightweight Donovan showed his slick counter-punching skills – not dissimilar to those of current WBO World middleweight champion Andy Lee – against Turkey’s Tugrulhan Erdemir.

The Our Lady of Lourdes BC leftie found the target with the majority of the cleaner shots in this contest. His backhand was a constant problem for Erdemir, who, to his credit, kept moving forward despite being repeatedly clipped in all three rounds.

Donovan gave his coaches Billy McClean and Fergal McKenna hugs in celebration at the end of the three rounds, but the decision (29-28 across the board) went against the talented Irish lightweight.

“Eamer Coughlan won his final and Paddy Donovan totally won his. He won every round, 100%”, said Irish team manager Paddy Osbourne.

“They both gave it everything today, never faltered. The entire squad were outstanding at these tournament.”

Coughlan (silver), Donovan (silver) and Paul Ryan (bronze) finished in podium positions for Ireland in St Petersburg.

Irish coaches Billy, McClean, Fergal McKenna and Dmitriy Dimitruk were working Ireland’s corner in St Petersburg on another proud afternoon for Ireland’s most successful Olympic sport.

Team Ireland are due to arrive home via Dublin Airport on Sunday night at 9.10pm. Flight – KLM KL3161 13SEP Amsterdam Dublin 2030 2110

AIBA World Junior Championships St Petersburg, Russia

September 4th
80+kg Martin J Mongan (Ireland) lost to Dmitri Fominykh (Russia) 0-3

September 5th
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Ireland) beat Suntatullo Yunuszade (Tajikistan) 3-0
57kg Eric Nash (Ireland) lost to Ivan Atanasov (Bulgaria) 1-2
63kg Jack Conroy (Ireland) lost to Yibukayimu Mamuti (China) 0-3
70kg Tommy Hyde (Ireland) beat Lukas Petrauskas (Lithuania) 3-0

September 6th
46kg Craig Kavanagh (Ireland) lost to Rustan Muratov (Kyrgyzstan) 0-3
50kg Joe Nevin (Ireland) beat Zabehullo Ashuroz (Tajikistan) 3-0
54kg Sean Purcell (Ireland) beat David Toth (Hungary) 3-0
66kg Paul Ryan (Ireland) beat Ahtamjon Khaidov (Tajikistan) 3-0

September 7th
50kg Joe Nevin (Ireland) lost to Ray Diaz (USA) 1-2 (Last 16)
52kg Aaron McKenna (Ireland) beat Abibe Bennams (France) 3-0
60kg Paddy Donovan (Ireland) beat Abylay Ybraimov (Kazakhstan) 3-0
70kg Tommy Hyde (Ireland) beat Djallal Bouchkouk (Algeria) 3-0 (last 16)
80kg Jimmy O’Reilly (Ireland) lost to Vladislav Ivanov (Russia) 0-3 (last 16)

September 8th (last 16)
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Ireland) beat Lewis Cooley (England) TKO3
52kg Aaron McKenna (Ireland) lost to Samatali Toltayev (Kazakhstan) 1-2
54kg Sean Purcell (Ireland) beat Namoja Gavrilovic (Serbia) 3-0
60kg Paddy Donovan (Ireland) beat Koryan Astoyan (Armenia) 3-0
66kg Paul Ryan (Ireland) beat Joshua Mataele (Trinidad & Tobago) 3-0
75kg Anthony Johnston (Ireland) lost to Cristhian Pinder (Cuba) W/O

September 9th
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Ireland) beat Pasquale Di Sivo (Italy) TKO3
54kg Sean Purcell (Ireland) lost to Taras Bondarchuk (Ukraine) 0-3
60kg Paddy Donovan (Ireland) beat Marrambek Kaikuev (Kyrgyzstan) 3-0
66kg Paul Ryan (Ireland) beat Milan Prat (France) 3-0
70kg Tommy Hyde (Ireland) lost to Bayren Malkan (Turkey) 0-3

September 11th
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Ireland) beat Halmbek Utegenov (Uzbekistan) 2-1
60kg Paddy Donovan (Ireland) beat Harley Mederos (USA) 2-1
66kg Paul Ryan (Ireland) lost to Dilshodbek Ruzmetov (Uzbekistan) 1-2

September 12th
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Ireland) lost to Illia Popov (Russia) 0-3
60kg Paddy Donovan (Ireland) lost to Tugrulhan Erdemir (Turkey) 0-3

Irish squad
46kg Craig Kavanagh (Crumlin)
48kg Eamer Coughlan (Riverstown) (Silver)
50kg Joe Nevin (Kilcullen)
52kg Aaron McKenna (Old School) captain
54kg Sean Purcell (Marble City)
57kg Eric Nash (Ardnaree)
60kg Paddy Donovan (OLOL) (Silver)
63kg Jack Conroy (Mullingar)
66kg Paul Ryan (Bay City) (Bronze)
70kg Tommy Hyde (Setanta)
75kg Anthony Johnston (Gleann)
80kg Jimmy O’Reilly (Portlaoise)
80+kg Martin J Mongan (Ennis)

Team Manager Paddy Osbourne
Coaches Billy McClean, Dmitry Dmitruk, Fergal McKenna

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: