Sunday 15 September 2019

Rio 'highlights loss of Billy Walsh'

By Maria Pepper

Ireland's poor boxing performance in the Olympic Games compared to the success of the American team highlights the loss of Billy Walsh to the sport in this country, according to Wexford councillor George Lawlor.

Cllr. Lawlor said the ticket scandal involving Olympic Council of Ireland officials in Rio de Janeiro must not be allowed to overshadow the mistakes of the Irish Amateur Boxing Association.

Following an 'appalling outcome' by Ireland's chief medal hopes, it is clear that the country's boxers are both leaderless and rudderless, despite the best efforts of their coaches, he said.

'An even greater indictment of the IABA's actions during the Billy Walsh sage is the fact that the Wexfordman coached the US team to one of its most successful Olympic Games despite the fact that he had only been with the squad for less than a year,' said Cllr. Lawlor, describing himself as a 'close confidant' of the former Irish boxing coach.

'There is now no doubt that there needs to be a cull of the top brass in the IABA if Irish Amateur Boxing is to recover from this abysmal showing.'

'As a close confident of Billy Walsh I witnessed at first hand the appalling disrespect shown to him by the IABA. This, despite the fact that he was and remains the most successful international coach in Irish sporting history,' said the Labour councillor.

'It has taken the outcome of these games to hammer home the loss that Billy Walsh is to sport on this island and those responsible for the loss must now be held accountable,' he added.

Wexford People

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