Sport

West Cork boxers pack big punch in leagues

February 19th, 2019 2:00 PM

By Jack McCarron

Jack O'Hea (Ilen River) and Soni Gaffney (Bantry) both impressed in their respective contests.

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WEST Cork boxing continued to flourish with no less than eight fighters in action at Churchfield for the Cork County Leagues.

Bantry ABC provided the bulk of the boxers with six on the card while there was one each from Dunmanway and the Ilen River club in Skibbereen.

The classy Soni Gaffney once again impressed with victory in his 44kg Boy 4 contest. The Bantry slickster looks to have huge potential and he had to be at his best to beat a very game Timmy McCarthy from Mayfield. In what was probably the highest quality contest on the card, Gaffney won a decision, using his longer reach to his advantage throughout.

Gaffney’s sister Rosie was also in action on Saturday, making her debut against Jodie McCarthy in the Girl 1 45kg division. Rosie showed plenty and will no doubt come again but she came up just shy against McCarthy, who was arguably the most impressive boxer in action on Saturday.

Elsewhere there were good wins for Brikena Kotarja and Zack Coakley while Jack Gibbons and Kieran Coughlan were unlucky to lose their bouts on points.

Caheragh man Jack O’Hea, who fights out of Ilen River, came out on top in his 72kg Senior bout in what could only be described as a barn-burner.

Up against a well-matched foe from the St Colman’s club, O’Hea used his superior hand speed to overwhelm his opponent in the opening round. The second round was closer with both boxers landing heavy shots and it was a credit to both their chins that neither took a standing eight count. 

O’Hea found a good rhythm with his jab towards the end of the round but was bloodied and bruised ahead of the final stanza having had his nose opened up with a straight right. The two traded leather again in the third in what was a hotly contested round and O’Hea will have been happy with his day’s work, getting a deserved decision from the judges.

Dunmanway’s Oisin O’Donovan closed the show in a heavyweight slugfest against Peter Nosic from Brian Dillons. O’Donovan landed several big shots in the opening two rounds and looked to have rocked Nosic on more than one occasion. Ultimately though he fell short against a more experienced opponent in Nosic in what was a thrilling end to a great day’s action.

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