As you will have seen, COVID has ensured that we can’t have a big awards night in person so the 2021 Irish-Boxing Awards have moved online.
Below are the eight categories and forty nominees for this year’s awards as we recognise and honour the best of Irish boxing in 2021.
The online vote will run until Friday February 4th and we will announce the winners on Saturday February 5th.
So without further ado…
The Rinty Monaghan Fighter of the Year
– Jono Carroll
– Mick Conlan
– Lewis Crocker
– Kellie Harrington
– Katie Taylor
A strong year, we have an Olympic gold medallist in Harrington, Taylor with three world title defences, Conlan and Carroll moving into world title contention, and Crocker elevating himself to Belfast headliner.
The Eamonn Magee Jr Prospect of the Year
– Dean Clancy
– Stevie McKenna
– Pierce O’Leary
– Ryan O’Rourke
– Joe Ward
For fighters below professional title and senior amateur international level. Last year’s winner, O’Rourke, is up again and is joined by a resurgent Ward, an increasingly impressive O’Leary, the McKenna wrecking machine and European U22 gold medallist Clancy.
The John Duddy Fight of the Year
– Robbie Burke v Jamie Morrissey
– Mick Conlan v TJ Doheny
– Cain Lewis v Juan Yin
– Tyrone McKenna v Jose Felix Jr
– Jason Quigley v Shane Mosely Jr
Domestic action at both ends of the professional spectrum are recognised here with the Conlan-Doheny fight that was unparalleled in scale alongside the six-round short-notice war between Burke and Morrissey. McKenna-Felix was pure insanity, Quigley-Mosely was an enthralling crossroads clash, and Lewis-Yin stole the show at the Ulster Hall.
The Andy Lee KO of the Year
– Gary Cully v Viktor Kotochigov
– Paddy Donovan v Jose Luis Castillo
– Pierce O’Leary v Jan Marsalek
– Thomas O’Toole v Mark Malone
– Mike Perez v Tony Salam
There were some cracking finishes over the past 12 months, from Cully’s perfect 1-2, Donovan’s delicious bodyshot, O’Leary’s scary hook, O’Toole grabbing his chance, and Perez’s emphatic comeback.
What’s the Irish Boxing KO of the Year? 💣 pic.twitter.com/avoHyQznbs
— Joe O’Neill (@J0E_90) December 28, 2021
The Wayne McCullough Performance of the Year
– Caoimhín Agyarko v Noe Larios Jr
– Anto Cacace v Lyon Woodstock
– Kellie Harrington v Beatriz Ferreira
– Padraig McCrory v Sergei Gorokhov
– Aidan Walsh v Albert Mengue & Mervin Clair
There were some sensational performances in 2021 – Agyarko’s perfect Matchroom debut, Cacace making a mockery of 50:50 talk, McCrory dominating a dangerman, Walsh boxing the perfect gameplan (twice), and Harrington’s famous nine minutes.
The Paddy Hyland Sr Trainer of the Year
– Zaur Antia
– Andy Lee
– Shane McGuigan
– Pete Taylor
– Dee Walsh
King Zaur was in the corner for two more Olympic medals, Lee shot to prominence as the hottest new trainer in town, McGuigan toasted another new world champion, Taylor’s growing stable continued to thrive, and Walsh had another unblemished year.
Debut of the Year
– Colm Murphy
– Kristina O’Hara
– Kate Radomska
– Callum Walsh
– Dylan Wilson
Walsh needed just a few seconds, Murphy slid comfortably into six-round fights, Wilson stole the show in Spain, O’Hara looked every inch a champion in waiting and Radomska made a huge statement.
Special Merit Award
– Emmet Brennan
– John Carpenter
– Dominic Donegan
– Kiko Martinez
– Darren O’Neill
A new award for this year to recognise some of the achievements which perhaps don’t fit into a category. We had O’Neill’s comeback, Brennan’s inspirational journey, Carpenter’s scarcely believable route into boxing, Donegan’s perseverance and attitude, along with a magical win for our old friend Kiko.