Dean Clancy is Sligo’s first-ever Olympic boxer.
The Western talent made history today with victory over Italian champion Gianluigi Malanga at the Nowy Targ Arena, Poland.
The win sees Clancy pick up his first major senior elite international medal and join the illustrious list of Irish Olympians.
A Youth Olympian and one of the breakout stars of the tournament continues to fulfill his underage promise thanks in particular to a very impressive unanimous decision today.
Clancy is now his county’s fourth Olympian after John Joe Dykes of 1924 fame and Tokyo duo Chris O’Donnell and Mona McSharry.
The 22-year-old 63.5kg fighter is the second Irish fighter to progress to Paris on an action-packed day, as he joins reigning champion Kellie Harrington in reaching the Olympics.
Jennifer Lehane and Amy Broadhurst couldn’t get over the final Olympic hurdle earlier in the day. Ashbourne’s DCU boxer Lehane suffered quarter-final defeat to Stanimira Petrova, while Louth star Broadhurst had an entertaining shootout with Rosie Eccles of Team GB and was unlucky to come out second best.
The Italian came out fast and furious flicking an effective jab up from his waist and firing in rapid-fire flurries, much to the delight of the Italian contingent in the arena. However, once Clancy began to figure out his foe’s approach he began to land clean. Indeed, the Irish fighter landed the bigger punches of a round that saw his foe win the volume battle.
The European Under-20 medal winner went through the styles in the second stanza, transitioning from pressing the Italian on and closing the space with his hands held high to a more lucid stylish approach – and both brought success although ‘GG’ did have his moments in another competitive session.
The final three minutes were tense as both made a final Olympic push. It lead to a more inside battle which initially looked like it might suit Clancy. However the Italian showed his ability to fight in close quarters and it took some massive left hooks for the Irish fighter to make sure he took the round, one of which sent his opponent’s gum shield flying across the ring.
Clancy will now look to upgrade his bronze medal to silver.