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The Class of 2024 – INTRODUCING Ireland’s European Youth Team

Team Ireland returns to the European Youth stage this week.

The Class of 2204 will contest a prestigious tournament with a history of making stars in Porec, Croatia, between April 4 and 15.

Ireland didn’t send a team to the 2023 installment but the Irish singlet makes a welcome return to the stage when the tournament gloves off Thursday.

The IABA are confident the 15-strong team has medals in them but it may prove difficult to eclipse the record-breaking performance of the Class of 2022.

Irish boxers won eight medals in total, three gold, a silver, and four bronze in a great week for amateur Irish boxing in Sofia, Bulgaria in 2022.

The four bronze medals came courtesy of 48kg boxers Georgia McGovern and Patsy Joyce, 50kg Katie O’Keeffe, and 63kg Winnie McDonagh.

70kg Laura Moran had silver draped over her neck while 71kg Bobbi Flood, 81kg Dearbhla Tinnelly, and 81+kg Cliona D’arcy all had the Midas touch.

Another very strong team competes at the level, this time in Croatia and we here at will attempt to introduce you to them.

48kg Tiffany Spencer, Jobstown BC, Dublin

Pocket Rocket Tiffany Spencer’s rise to international level has been an impressive one.

The Jobstown fighter only took up the sport at 15 and in the Summer of 2022 but has already won three Irish titles and makes her International debut at European level in this tournament.

50kg Carlagh Peake, Ballyhaunis BC, Mayo.

The continental stage is nothing new to Carlagh Peak. This is the third time the Mayo woman will contest a Europeans.

The six-time Irish titlist will be hoping to add to the European bronze medal she won at school girl level in Croatia.

52kg Grace Conway Dowling, Tredagh BC, Louth

Serial domestic winner Grace Conway graces the European stage for the second time. The five-time Irish champion’s last appearance was a successful one, as she won silver at the European Juniors.

54kg Nicole Kinsella, St. Mary’s BC, NR, Wexford

Nicole Kinsella gets the chance to show her International credentials for the first time. The talented four-time Irish champion makes her European debut in Porec.

63kg Ava Henry, Dublin Docklands BC.

One of a few fighters on the team that need little introduction. Indeed, Ava Henry is a name fighters and coaches from rival countries will be aware of.

The Dublin Docklands boxer has European experience and experience of winning medals at the level, having stepped onto the European Junior and European Silver podiums. The seven-time Irish champion will be looking to make it a hat trick of continental medals at the European Youths.

66kg Kyla Doyle Byrne, Whitechurch BC, Dublin

Kayla Doyle’s history in boxing doesn’t date back as far as most but there remains high hopes she could have a good tournament.

The Whitechurch fighter only started competing in 2021 but is a two-time Irish champion. She makes her international debut in Croatia.

48kg Scott Thompson, Spartans BC, Antrim

Scott Thompson has been doing it for a long time at National level and now gets the chance to show his wares internationally. The Spartan’s boxer has six Irish titles in his trophy cabinet and will be hoping he will have to make room for a European medal as he fights at the European Youth’s for the first time.

51kg Jamie Collins, Drimnagh BC, Dublin

Driminagh’s Jamie Collins mantle piece already has a European medal on it, the 51kg fighter claimed European Junior Silver in 2022.

The four-time Irish title winner is back at the level and will fancy his podium chances at Youth level.

54kg Kai Griffin Avona BC, Dublin

Kai Griffen is another with European experience, having represented his country at European Schoolboy level. The Avona boxer who has five Irish titles to his name will be hoping to medal upon his return to the International stage.

57kg Martin McDonagh, Avona BC, Dublin.

Martin McDonagh knows all about winning having banked no fewer than seven Irish titles across the age groups. He will bring that winning mentality to the International level for the first time over the next 10 days or so – and will hope to win a medal for club and country in what is his European debut.

60kg Jack Johnson, Marble City BC, Kilkenny

The man with famous boxing name, Jack Johnson will be hoping to get on famously in Croatia. The Marble City club man is another making his continental bow. The two-time Irish champion, who emerged victorious from a stacked lightweight division domestically, will now try his luck at a higher level.

63.5kg Ryan Jenkins, Olympic BC, Westmeath

Ryan Jenkins will be hoping it’s second time lucky in terms of his European medal pursuit. The latest of the Olympic Mullingar production line has dominated nationally in a competitive weight class, winning six Irish crowns across the grades, and will look to win a European medal at the second attempt.

67kg Ryan Connolly, Setanta BC, Kildare.

Three-time Irish champion Ryan Connolly makes his European debut in Croatia. The entertaining to watch Setanta boxer came through a competitive weight class domestically and will now look to make an impact on the European stage.

71kg Tadhg O’Donnell, Four Kings BC, Wicklow.

The King of Four Kings proved himself the 71kg King of Europe at his age and weight when he won gold at the European Juniors in 2022.

The boxer, whose welcome back to school reception went viral, will be another who is deemed a real medal hope and the three-time Irish champion will be confident of making a run for the podium.

92+kg Adam Olaniyan, Jobstown BC, Dublin.

Jobstown gaint Adam Olaniyan will be going for gold in the super heavyweight class. The much fancied and extremely highly touted Tallaght native climbed to the top of the podium in the European Schoolboys and was on course to claim a second continental medal in the European Juniors, only to be denied by an extremely controversial decision.

The five-time Irish champion is back on the international stage in 2024 and would be seen as a genuine medal hope.


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