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‘We did it’ – Olympian Jennifer Lehane ‘on top of the world’

Jenifer Lehane says she is on ‘top of the world’ after qualifying for the Paris Olympics.

The Ashbourne native stamped her ticket to Paris with victory over Hanna Lakotar of Hungary in Bangkok on a sensational Sunday for Irish boxing.

The win sees the 25-year-old, who took leave from her role as a primary school teacher to pursue her dream, come from left field to become one of the stars of the current Olympic cycle.

A former martial artist, Lehane was seen as second to underage starlet Niamh Fay in the bantamweight pecking order a few years ago. However, she battled her way to the top spot domestically and excelled under the watchful eye of the High Performance coaches.

The path to Paris still had its potholes and bumps but the DCU boxer hit top form in Thailand this week and after three brilliant performances is now part of a special club of Irish boxing Olympians.

The 54kg fighter from Ashbourne said: “I feel on top of the world. This is what dreams are made of. I can’t believe it.

“We sat down together, put the tactics together, I implemented them, I stuck to my simple boxing. I think that’s what got me over the line.”

Lehane was visibly emotional post the win and particularly upon being handed the golden ticket. Emotional to the point where she just wanted a hug from her someone special.

“I can’t wait to give my boyfriend Shane a hug, and my coach Derek, I know they’d love to be here with me. We did it.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years