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On This Day: June 13th

2003: Light welterweight Paul McCloskey and light heavyweight Ken Egan claimed silver medals at the inaugural EU Championships in Strasbourg.

Dungiven’s McCloskey had guaranteed a medal with a victory over Norwegian Mohamed Massoudy (24:8), before winning via fourth round disqualification over Estonia’s Albert Starikov. The Derry boxer was defeated in the final by French legend Willy Blain (37:26). Blain would win World gold the following month in Thailand.

Dubliner Egan won his first international medal, beating Lithuanian Donatas Jasevicius (28:9) in the quarters before overcoming France’s John Dovi via countback (+19:19) to claim silver. The Neilstown puncher lost to Turk Tarhan Yildirim (12-18) in the decider.

1943: An old-school Belfast derby at the Ulster Hall saw John Jim Griffen stop Paddy Kelly in the fourth round to claim the vacant Northern Irish featherweight title. Griffen would lose the belt in his first defence against legendary Derry fighter Spider Kelly.

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: