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‘Purely a Cosmetic Exercise’ – Portlaoise BC Withdraw For National Elite Championships

Portlaoise BC have confirmed none of their fighters will compete in the recently announced National Elite Championships.

The IABA confirmed the blue ribbon amateur event was returning for the first time since 2019 next month.

What promises to be an exciting tournament full of new senior blood will play out between September 17 and October 3.

The news was greeted with excitement and welcomed by many but Portlaoise BC have raised concerns via their head coach Pat Ryan.

The statement raised concerns with regard to fighters with access to Abbotstown and the fact they have a training advantage as well as prior knowledge with regard to the championship’s dates.

The statement released on social media also asks questions with regard to who made the decision and goes as far as to question ‘the integrity of the IABA as an organisation.

The statement reads as follows:

Provisional dates only.

Why can they not put a definite date on these championships, we are going nowhere.

Portlaoise boxing club, will not be participating in these championships. This decision has been taken, solely in the interest of the health and safety of our boxers, members, and all of those who serve our boxers.

It’s too short notice, and not sufficient time for preparation. It’s purely a cosmetic exercise. Badly thought out, and very disrespectful to the vast majority of our boxers, coaches, clubs and all of those who administer boxing in the thirty two counties.

It’s obvious that there are boxers training in Abbots – Town, who are privileged to have this knowledge and information??
A level playing field?

Let us train properly, attend training camps, and participate in pre – competition tournaments, to assist our boxers with the correct, proper, and appropriate preparation, as has been afforded to all those boxers who are already training, in the High Performance Unit.
Who is making these decisions? Who has made this decision?

It cannot be anyone involved at elite level, who fully understands, the meticulous planning and preparation required at this level of competition for our Senior Elite boxers, to compete, perform and win at Senior Elite competitions.

This decision taken has been grossly unfair, and is not transparent.
It’s just not safe for all concerned, and one would have to question, the integrity of the IABA as an organisation, in this matter.
Pat Ryan
Portlaoise Boxing Club

Jonny Stapleton contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: