Glory for UL Boxing Club
HISTORY was made by the UL Amateur Boxers at its first ever IATBA National Championship. A squad of five boxers from UL entered the fray against the very best Irish colleges.
The journey to this point for the UL Boxing Club had not been easy, but thanks to the professionalism of head coach Mario Feliciello and the drive of Peter Tully, great strives had been made over the course of the past six months to take the club from relative obscurity to battling out for the possibility of five Irish Titles.
The first two boxers to compete under the UL banner were first year student Fionnbarr Thompson and third year Peter McCabe.
Both athletes could boast previous Kickboxing experience, but for both, this was a new kind of adventure. In a contrast of styles, Thompson’s all action and McCabe’s controlled, methodical display made for exciting fights.
Unfortunately, for both Thompson and McCabe, debatable decisions didn’t go their way.
Competing in the semi finals were first year Business student David Lewis and the experienced James McDowell.
Lewis engaged in a tough blow for blow battle with his LIT Tipp opponent in what was one of the duels of the day but resulted in a disappointing decision in favour of the LIT student.
Next up was McDowell. The Leitrim native provided the crowd with an assured performance and an easy passage into the finals, joining fellow UL boxer John King who had progressed the previous day.
With two fighters in the finals it was all very much still to play for. King stepped up to the -75KG Intermediate section and once again displayed flair and skill. In another tough contest, the decision once again went against UL.
Facing the prospect of returning to Limerick with only a solitary silver medal thanks to King’s efforts, James McDowell held the opportunity to go one better and notify the country of the prowess of UL Boxing Club in the -64KG Senior division. McDowell weaved, bobbed and countered his way to an historic victory and the first ever IATBA Gold medal for UL
“’It was special for me to win an Irish Title”, said McDowell. He also acknowledged the time put in by the coaching team in UL. “Thanks to Mario for improving me so much in such a short space of time, and to Peter Tully who is the main reason the club has started.”
Bright times lay ahead for the UL Amateur Boxing Club.
Posted by Kelly O'Brien on at 10:00 am.
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