By Jay Mwamba
Ireland’s six entrants in the ongoing World Amateur Boxing Championships in Houston were all eliminated before the quarterfinal round.
Featherweight Bernard Dunne and lightweight Aodh Carlyle, both from Dublin, were the only Irish fighters to advance to the second round, but both lost on Monday night.
Dunne, the son of amateur great Brendan Dunne, was outpointed by Tukunbay Turgunov of Uzbekistan, while Carlyle dropped a 6-0 decision to Thai champion Pongsit Wiangwisas.
A quarterfinalist in last year’s World Junior Championships, the 20-year-old Dunne had earlier registered Ireland’s first win in Houston when he beat Dutchman Husnu Kocabas 9-7 in the first round on Saturday.
Carlyle later joined him in the second round after defeating Ramil Zambales of the Philippines, 8-5.
Sign up to The Irish Echo Newsletter
For Ireland’s other World Championship hopefuls — flyweight Liam Cunningham, bantamweight Damien McKenna, veteran welterweight Neil Gough and Sligo heavyweight Stephen Reynolds — their participation in the biennial tournament amounted to no more than cameo appearances.
Cunningham, who hails from Belfast, was outpointed 9-2 by Waldenmar Cucereanu of Romania.McKenna, from Drogheda, lost by a mere point (7-6) to Zakhid Mekhtsiyeu of Belarus.
The seasoned Gough, a Waterford legend with six All-Irish titles to his name, came up short against Nurzhan Smanov of Kazakhstan who triumphed 13-8, while Reynolds was bested by Welsh heavyweight Kevin Evans, an 8-4 winner.
The World Championships, the last major amateur event before next year’s Olympics, end on Friday.