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Strong Strandja Team Named

A 14 strong team has been named to contest the 75th Strandja Memorial Tournament in Sofia, Bulgaria, next month.

The team includes all Team Ireland athletes currently qualified for Paris 2024 – Jack Marley (92kg), Dean Clancy (63.5kg), Tokyo Olympians Aoife O’Rourke (75kg), Michaela Walsh (57kg) and reigning lightweight champion, Kellie Harrington.

Rounding out the team are Elite High Performance Athletes 50kg Shannon Sweeney, 54kg Niamh Fay, 2022 World Champions Amy Broadhurst and Lisa O’Rourke, along with 51kg Rickey Nesbitt, 57kg Adam Hession, 57kg Dylan Eagleson, 71kg Eugene McKeever, 71kg Dean Walsh, and 92+kg Martin McDonagh.

At the 74th edition of the tournament, IABA boxers returned with 3 gold, for Kellie Harrington, Aoife O’Rourke and Tina Desmond, and one bronze for Kelyn Cassidy.

High Performance Head Coach, Zauri Antia says “Strandja is a very tough tournament – last year, 38 nations competed there and we performed very strongly. This is an equally strong team, preparing to go up against some of the best boxers in the world.”

High Performance Director, Tricia Heberle, says “Strandja is a world-renowned tournament and one at which IABA has a history of contesting strongly. This is a dual focus competition – for our athletes already qualified for Paris, this is a key preparation event. For the Paris 2024 Olympic Training Squad, this is a vital development and preparation opportunity, where they will meet some of the highest-level international athletes. The preparation for this team, supported by Sport Ireland and Sport Science practitioners at Sport Institute Ireland, has been excellent, and has included a Heat Acclimatisation Camp in Tenerife, and training at the Ulster High Performance Unit, at the University of Ulster Jordanstown, as well as at our base in SII.”


50kg Shannon Sweeney, St. Anne’s BC, Mayo

54kg Niamh Fay, Phoenix of Ballyboughal BC, Dublin

57kg Michaela Walsh, Holy Family GG, Belfast

60kg Kellie Harrington, St. Mary’s BC, Tallaght, Dublin

66kg Amy Broadhurst, St. Bronagh’s ABC, Newry

66kg Lisa O’Rourke, Castlerea BC, Roscommon

75kg Aoife O’Rourke, Castlerea BC, Roscommon

51kg Rickey Nesbitt, Holy Family BC, Drogheda

57kg Adam Hession, Monivea BC, Galway

57kg Dylan Eagleson, St. Paul’s BC, Antrim

63.5kg Dean Clancy, Sean McDermott BC, Leitrim

71kg Eugene McKeever, Holy Family, Drogheda

71kg Dean Walsh, St Ibar’s/St Joseph’s BC, Wexford.

92kg Jack Marley, Monkstown BC, Dublin

92+kg Martin McDonagh, Crumlin, Dublin.


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years