By Michael O'Neill
The Olympic Boxing BC in Galway fly out to Denmark on Thursday next to compete in Denmark’s 17th International Viking Box Cup tournament which takes place at the Lindholm Bokseklub from January 3rd to 6th.
The “Battle of the Brave” gloves off in Nørresundby on January 3rd, an event held under the auspices of the Danish Boxing Association (DABU)
The Olympic BC have named a talented young squad for the away trip – the Oughterard BC are also sending a team to Nørresundby – and are looking forward to a competitive outing said club coach Michael Mongan.
He said: “We haven’t competed in this competition before. I got the invite last year and I have my done my research and it seems to be a well-known and prestigious tournament.
“I decided to take up the invite and so did the Oughterard BC. They are bringing over four boxers.
“We have plenty of experience on the team. Our team captain Dylan Ward was beaten in an Irish semi-last year and Michael Delaney got beaten in a final to Craig Bonney (Trinity Boys) in his first year competing nationally.
“James Cleary has won two Irish titles and is a European silver medallist. James’ cousin, Frankie Cleary, has won three Irish titles and represented Ireland against Scotland.
“Martin Delaney is a two-time Irish champion and Owen McCarthy won an Irish Cadet title this year and represented Ireland against Scotland.
“All other boxers have national experience. The novice on the team is Johnny Myers. He is there for experience.
“I am expecting most of all the lads to do well and if they pick up a medal of some sort it would be a bonus.”
The 2013 Viking Cup is the 17th edition of the prestigious international tournament.
The Olympic boxing club, located in Galways’s Seamus Quirke Road, was founded under the name of the Holy Family in the 1960′s and was later renamed in 1988 as the Olympic boxing club under the guidance of Michael ‘Chick’ Gillen once an accomplished boxer himself.
The highlight of the club’s history to date was back in 1996 when local lad Francie Barrett went on to represent his country in 1996 at the Atlanta Olympic Games and was indeed the official Irish flag carrier in Atlanta.
Since then the club has gone from strength to strength wining countless county, provincial and national titles under the guidance of Head Coach John Mongan who also has the honour of being a 1 star qualified
European Referee and Judge and has officiated in many parts of Europe to date.
Oughterard Boxing Club was founded in 1962 by the late Johnny O’Connor, who saw boxing as a great means of keeping the local youth and GAA players fit over the winter months and the club grew from there. Today, fifty years on, it is a thriving club.