Monaghan’s Joanne Lambe wouldn’t say no to a rub of the green in the draw for the AIBA World Women’s Elite Championships in Jeju, South Korea on Sunday.
But the Carrickmacross BC featherweight, the current Irish Elite champion, has vowed that she will be prepared for anything that comes out of the hat at the Blue Riband tournament of Elite women’s boxing.
Lambe, defending lightweight champion Katie Taylor, Michaela Walsh and Claire Grace will line out for Ireland in Jeju.
Taylor, who is targeting a fifth successive lightweight title, will be taking part in her 6th World Championships since 2005. She has won 20 of her 21 fights at this level over the last nine years.
Lambe, who reached the last-eight at the European Elite Championships in Bucharest, Romania this year – she was beaten by Bulgaria’s eventual silver medallist Svetlana Kamenova –, is not in the business of taking things for granted.
She said: “Obviously, I’m hoping for a kind draw on Sunday. However, you have got to be prepared for anything. It is the World Championships at the end of the day and everybody will have their eyes on the prize.
“Nobody is coming out here to lose or make up numbers. So it doesn’t matter who is in front of me in the ring, I will not be underestimating or overestimating anybody.
“Training has gone really well to date. We have a fantastic atmosphere in the team, everybody is getting on so well and we are all looking forward to the competition starting. We have sparred with the Korean team a few times and we were all very pleased with our performances. I watched Katie, Clare and Michaela sparring and they all look on form. I felt great in my own spars too.
“I have no idea how many will be in each weight category, it will be interesting to see! I’m expecting a high number in mine though.”
The Irish squad have been in Jeju for almost two weeks ahead of the opening bell for the 8th edition of the tournament at the 6,000 capacity Halla Gym this weekend. Over 70 nations have registered to compete.
Boxing begins at 11am on Sunday (Irish time).
AIBA World Women’s Elite Championships Jeju, Korea November 16/24
54kg Michaela Walsh (Holy Family)
57kg Joanna Lambe (Carrickmacross)
60kg Katie Taylor (Bray)
69kg Claire Grace (Callan)
Team manager Anna Moore
Coaches Pete Taylor, Zuare Antia, Gerry Storey