Battle Of The Bayview, Killybegs, Co. Donegal
The Garda Boxing club hosted a great night of boxing at the Bayview Hotel on Saturday September 6th. The newly opened hotel had a crowd of over 200 people in attendance and they were treated to a well matched evenly contested bill between members of the garda boxing Club and a donegal team. also in attendance were local Superintendent Andrew Archbold and D/superintendent jim Mcgowan, from the Garda Boxing Club.
Mark Grant got the evening underway in a light middle weight clash against Michael Ward from Letterkenny Boxing Club. After two exciting all action rounds, it was all square going into the final round so both lads had to go at it and Grant picked off the cleaner punches against his southpaw opponent.
Grant found his range with a right cross-left hook combination and forced his opponent back throughout the round and earned himself a very good win against a more experienced opponent. The second bout was at heavyweight where Mike Mullen took on the far more experienced Davit Tobtoria from Letterkenny.
Mullen put up a great fight and if he had been fitter he could have changed the result of the contest. Tabtoria’s work rate and experience proved a little too much for a boxer who is only back training, but Mullen will have learned a lot from this fight and should be very proud of his performance.
At 85kg Joe Hurst put on an excellent display of boxing against Peter Mcgonigle from Ballyshannon. Mcgonigle came to fight but was picked off with sharp counter punching throughout the three rounds. in the final round he received a standing eight count and Hurst was a deserving unanimous decision winner.
The final fight before the break was at 91kg plus and involved two Detective Gardai. John O’Sullivan representing St. John Bosco, and David Cahill for Garda Boxing Club. Credit must be given to Cahill who took the fight at 12 hours’ notice after the original opponent, Enda Muldoon was ruled out of action with an injured hand.
O’Sullivan’s southpaw stance immediately threw Cahill off. Cahill tried to put the pressure on against his larger opponent but was always slightly out of range with his very powerful right hand. In fairness o’sullivan fought a very clever fight.
He used his height and size advantage well and didn’t allow Cahill to land his back hand. It was a much cagier fight than anticipated and at the end of the three rounds O’Sullivan had done enough to get the nod of the judges. The first fight after the interval involved Kieran Reynolds from St. John Bosco and Benn Gallagher of the Garda Boxing Club.
Any fight involving Gallagher is usually an all-action affair and this was extra exciting as Reynolds had a similar style. Gallagher landed some great left hooks in the first round which really rattled his opponent but Reynolds proved his fitness and durability to weather the storm and hang on.
In the second and third round it was that fitness that showed as again Reynolds took Gallagher’s single hard punches and came back with his own flurries. These flurries probably caught the judge’s eye and at the end of the contest Reynolds won a very close split decision. The contest was rightly adjudged the “fight of the night”.
Next up was garda Paul Tierney representing the Garda Boxing Club and St. John Bosco against Colm O’Neill from Arklow Boxing Club. These lads have fought on previous occasions and the contests are always see-saw affairs. Whenever one scores a telling blow, the other tries to come back immediately to equalise things.
On this occasion Tierney was scoring the cleaner and more telling punches and preventing O’Neill from retaliating by tying him up on the inside. O’Neill needed a bit last round but Tierney used his composure and nice footwork to stay out of trouble before getting the decision.
The last contest of the night involved two big hitters and former National Intermediate Champions. Danny Tourish from Twin Towns boxing club, and Sean Allen from garda and Arklow. Allen started the fight well setting the pace and controlling the first two rounds with his powerful jab.
Anytime that Tourish set up an attack it was blocked by Allen who countered with a strong jab. in the last round Tourish went for it but again Allen’s defence was excellent, blocking head and body shots and coming back with his own powerful counters.
Those counters began to take their toll in the final stages of the round when Tourish took a standing 8 count.At the end of the contest allen had his hand raised for a deserving win. The Garda Boxing team won the tournament four bouts to three. It was an excellent tournament and much credit has to be given to Paul and Vicky Tierney and to St. John Bosco Club in Donegal who organised and hosted the event.