AmateurHeadline News

Irish boxers to compete at Dutch multi-nations this weekend

Ireland will be well represented at the Eindhoven Elite Box Cup which begins this weekend in the Netherlands.

Between the IABA, the IATBA, and individual clubs, a total of 13 Irish fighters will compete in Holland alongside boxers from Russia, Sri Lanka, Britain, Portugal, Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Ghana, France, Nigeria, Ukraine, Mongolia, Switzerland, and the home nation.

The national team will send a five strong side.

The panel is full of young talent alongside former Elite Senior super heavyweight champ and recent World Championships participant Dean Gardiner.

At lightweight Belfast’s James McGivern will make the trip. The Commonwealth Youth gold and European Youth silver medalist won the Irish Under-22s this year but did not travel to the European Championships, instead boxing at the Feliks Stamm multi-nations.

Galway welterweight Kieran Molloy will also make his way to another multi-nations. The Oughterard fighter claimed silver, Ireland’s only medal, at the Feliks Stamm in May.

Portlaoise middleweight Michael Nevin will continue his acclimatisation to the Elite Senior ranks. The triple underage European gold medalist and World Youth bronze winner won his fight in a Poland v Ireland Elite International last month.

At heavyweight Kirill Afanasev will be looking for more multi-nations glory. The Smithfield Russian topped the podium at the Nicolae Linca Golden Belt tournament in Romania

The Colleges and Universities team will send a further four boxers.

The eldest of the fighting McKennas from Monaghan – Gary – will line out at light welter.

At welterweight, Irish Intermediate champ Conor Ivors will make the journey. The Tipp boxer, a student at UL, recently switched clubs from Thurles to St Francis’s.

Loughrea’s Ryan Dervan will compete at middleweight.

World Universities bronze medalist and Elite Senior runner-up Ken Okungbowa will round out the team at heavyweight.

In terms of club representatives, Fr Horgan’s duo Tiegan Russell and Christina Desmond will compete at featherweight and middleweight respectively, while Joseph Kelly from St Canices will line out at light welter.

European and World Universities bronze medalist Desmond will be returning to her more natural class of 69kg – one of two new Olympic weights for women alongside featherweight.

Belfast’s Commonwealth bronze medalist Alanna Nihell will also compete at the tournament for the British Army as the lightweight warms up for a return to boxing in Ireland with the Ulster and Irish Elites.

The initial weigh-in will be held tomorrow Thursday with boxing scheduled to begin Friday.

The four-day tournament will be held under the supervision of the Dutch Boxing Association and AIBA.

Eindhoven Box Cup
Irish representatives
57kg Tiegan Russell (Fr Horgan’s)
60kg Alanna Nihell (British Army)
60kg James McGivern (St George’s)
64kg Gary McKenna (Old School)
64kg Joseph Kelly (St Canice’s)
69kg Conor Ivors (St Francis’s)
69kg Kieran Molloy (Oughterard)
69kg Christina Desmond (Conor
75kg Michael Nevin (Portlaoise)
75kg Ryan Dervan (Loughrea)
91kg Kirill Afanasev (Smithfield)
91kg Ken Okungbowa (Athlone)
91kg+ Dean Gardiner (Clonmel)


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: