Offaly County Council formally welcomes world's top boxers

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Justin Kelly

Reporter:

Justin Kelly

Email:

justin.kelly@iconicnews.ie

Offaly County Council formally welcomed international boxers to Edenderry’s St Brigid’s Boxing Club camp on Monday, August 28.

Having now ended, the camp, which was spearheaded by St. Brigid's coach Liam Morley Brereton, drew 100+ female boxers and their coaches from countries including Canada, France, India and Norway.

Eamonn Henry, Coordinator at Offaly Sports Partnership, in opening the formal welcome ceremony, noted Irish successes in boxing at the Olympic Games.

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Since independence, Ireland has won 31 Olympic medals, 16 of which have been in the sport of boxing including two gold; one of which was won by Katie Taylor when female boxing was first introduced to the Olympic Games in 2012.

Mr Henry emphasised the importance of international camps for female boxers where they can spar with other female boxers of similar abilities from different countries as the sport continues to grow.

Among the boxers in attendance was Mary Kom, MP at the parliament of India; herself an Olympic medallist having won bronze in the flyweight, 51kg category in London, and five-time World Amateur Boxing Champion, the first Indian women boxer to win a gold medal in the Asian Games in 2014 in Incheon, South Korea, and the only woman to have won a medal in each one of the six world championships.

Cllr Liam Quinn, Cathaoirleach Offaly County Council formally welcomed the nations to Offaly and presented Mary Kom, MP with a small memento of her time in Offaly.

Cllr Noel Bourke, Cathaoirleach Edenderry Municipal District and Declan Conlon, Deputy Chief Executive Offaly County Council and Edenderry Area Manager, congratulated St Brigid’s Boxing Club on the success of the 2017 camp; and presented head coach, Liam Brereton with a perpetual “Boxer of the Camp Award,” which was later awarded to Fatia Benmessahel of France.

Miriam O'Callaghan, Chair Offaly Sports Partnership echoed the words of Cllr Noel Bourke and Declan Conlon, and discussed the importance of women participating in sport across all sporting codes and age groups. Ms O Callaghan went on to present European Youth medallists Lauren Hogan and Lauren Kelly of St Brigid’s Boxing Club with a perpetual “Caught the Eye Award”, which was later awarded to Emelia Dermott of Canada.

Liam “Morley” Brereton accepted the awards on behalf of St. Brigid's Boxing Club and thanked the people of Edenderry for their support of the camp.

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