Moira McElligott hopes it will be a case of peaking at the right time in next week’s National Elite Senior final.
The Kerry featherweight, the reigning champion, has been ill in the lead-up to the tournament, but began her campaign with a win on Friday night.
McElligott defeated Amanda Coughlan of Paulstown via unanimous decision following three rounds where she was able to overcome a reach disadvantage and overpower the Intermediate champion.
The St Michael’s Athy fighter spoke to Irish-Boxing.com after the win and admitted that “I probably was not at my best, first week making weight and that. I’ll be a lot stronger next week. She [Coughlan] was not a bad girl, tall and a little bit awkward for me to get in, but I was on top for all three rounds.”
That said, 30 year old McElligott was happy to get in the ring, “just to do the three threes for the first time.”
The recent adjustment to the timing of bouts was no issue to the Astee boxer, but she revealed that preparations were far from perfect for her title defence. McElligott described how “pacing myself was fine – I’ve just been sick since Christmas with a bad kidney infection, that knocked a lot out of me. But I’m getting there now, I’m off the antibiotics and hopefully I’ll be stronger next week.”
McElligott will face Dervla Duffy in Friday’s final. The pair spent the past year on the Irish international team together, with Duffy competing at bantam before moving up for 2017.
The two have shared a ring numerous times, although not competitively, and McElligott is promising an entertaining clash in the decider, explaining how “I’ve been away on camps with her, I’ve sparred with her, Dervla is a tough, hard, genuine fighter and it will be a great fight. It’s always great in sparring.”
Photo Credit: Laszlo Geczo Photography
Eric Donovan joins Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill on Episode 2 of the Irish Boxing Show: