Kieran Molloy got Ireland’s European Under 22 Championships campiagn off to a winning start in Italy today.
The 22-year-old was the first of the ten strong team in action and got the ball rolling with an impressive win in Roseto degli Abruzzi.
Ireland’s wleterweight representative progressed past German Daniel Krotter to take his place in the last 16 thanks to a 4-1 victory.
Molloy looked that bit more polished in the opening two rounds but had to show some grit in the last stanza as his talented and game opponent went all out for victory.
The first round played host to a lot of chess match boxing, albeit faster than average tactical warfare, with Molloy shading seemingly shading it thanks to some nicely timed backhands. The Galway man then upped the tempo in the latter stages of the round just to make sure. Four judges eventually scored it in his favour.
The EU bronze medalist didn’t have to force the issue in the second and showed a lot more composure. He boxed beautifully off the back foot turning his southpaw jab as a check hook when needs be – and landing some timely one two’s before following what looked well-rehearsed exits plans.
He took that stanza on three of the five judges’ scorecards, two of the judges leaning toward the German, who did land some eye-catching shots and forced the pace somewhat.
The Irish fighter took a big shot early in the third but fought back admirably landing single counters to find a route back into contention for the round. Krotter was bullish in his bid to turn things around but Molloy showed some fighting spirit of his own and had the better quality.
To his credit, the German won the round 3-2, but Molloy took the fight by a 4-1 margin. Molloy now moves to within two wins of a medal and fights Eric Tudor of Romania in the last 16 on Saturday.
Sligo’s Dean Clancy is in action against Pete Novak of the Czech Republic later this evening before Day 2 plays host to four Irish-interest fights.
63kg Dean Clancy (Ireland) v Pete Novak (Czech Republic)
69kg Kieran Molloy (Ireland) v Dan Krotter (Germany)
62kg Sean Mari (Ireland) v Hamza Mahood (England)
51kg Niamh Earley (Ireland) v Romane Moulan (France)
75kg Gabriel Dossen (Ireland) v France or Moldova
81kg Kane Tucker (Ireland) v Raphael Monny (France)
56kg Adam Hessian (Ireland) v Gabor Virban (Hungary))
91kg Jack Marley (Ireland) v Dariusz Lasotta (Germany)
91kg+ Gytis Lisinskas (Ireland) v Vincenzo Fiaschetti (Italy)
60kg Ellie May-Gartland (Ireland) v Peige Richardson (England)
51kg Niamh Earley (Ryston)
60kg Ellie May-Gartland (Clonmel)
52kg Sean Mari (Monkstown)
56kg Adam Hessian (Monivea)
63kg Dean Clancy (Sean McDermott)
69kg Kieran Molloy (Oughterard)
75kg Gabriel Dossen (Olympic)
81kg Kane Tucker (Emerald)
91kg Jack Marley (Monkstown
91kg+ Gytis Lisinskas (Celtic Eagles)
Team Manager: Tara Mari
Coaches: Eoin Pluck, Damain Kennedy, James Doyle
Physio: David Cooke
Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@thefIrish)