England and the Netherlands won historical titles in the Rotterdam 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships

20 October 2020 News

The eighth edition of the European Women’s Boxing Championships for the elite boxers was held in Rotterdam, in the Netherlands in 2011. England and the host Netherlands achieved their historical first gold medals in the female continental event. Ireland’s star Katie Taylor won her five-in-a-row European women’s title in Rotterdam. 

Netherlands never hosted any top female competitions before the Rotterdam edition but it generated strong developments in the country. The International Olympic Committee involved the female part of boxing to the official Olympic program in 2009 and three weight classes were planning to held in London 2012. Following the positive decision involving women’s boxing to the Olympic program, began to launch more female programs and events in the whole world. 

The number of the female weight classes was reduced from 11 to 10 in the 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships. The pinweight (46kg) was cancelled from the official categories therefore the boxers could attend from the light flyweight (48kg) up to the heavyweight (+81kg) in Rotterdam. These categories are the official women weight classes until our present days. 

The first competition day of the 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships was October 17 in Rotterdam where the finals were scheduled on October 22. There were not any rest days during the 8th EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships. Two rounds of preliminaries were held at the flyweight (51kg), at the featherweight (57kg), at the lightweight (60kg), at the light welterweight (64kg) and at the middleweight (75kg).  

Altogether record number of 153 female athletes competed in the 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships in 10 weight categories in Rotterdam. The following 31 nations attended in the 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships in the Dutch edition: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and Wales. 

Poland, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine were the four nations once which competed with maximum number of 10 boxers in Rotterdam. Armenia, Azerbaijan and Bosnia & Herzegovina have done their debuts in the Rotterdam 2011 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships. 

Russia earned four gold medals as in the previous Mykolaiv 2009 edition and won the medal table two years later. Turkey claimed two gold medals in the Rotterdam where their boxers also achieved two further bronzes. Ukraine ranked as No.3 in the medal table with one gold, one silver and five bronze medals. England and the host Dutch team won their historical first female gold medals in Rotterdam. 

The tenth title was achieved by the Irish team in 2011 and as usual, Katie Taylor became their gold medallist in Rotterdam. Poland, Wales, Armenia and France had finalists in the event but their boxers lost their final steps in 2011. Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Sweden achieved bronze medals in the event. 

Russia’s Svetlana Gnevanova won the title of the pinweight (46kg) in the 2009 edition of the EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships. Following the cancellation of that weight class, the Russian boxer moved up to the light flyweight (48kg) but she captured the gold medal after beating Wales’ lone finalist Lynsey Holdaway in Rotterdam. The flyweight (51kg) became an Olympic category and its next winner was England’s Nicola Adams who moved ahead in the rankings step by step. Adams defeated Bulgaria’s Stoyka Petrova and France’s Sara Ourahmoune during her road to the gold medal. 

Russia’s Elena Saveleva was silver medallist in 2009 which she changed into gold at the bantamweight (54kg) using her fantastic long distance technique. The experienced Russian defeated her two top rivals as Turkey’s Ayse Tas and Poland’s aggressive Sandra Drabik in the semi-final and in the final. Ukraine’s Natalia Biryuk had a few surprise successes in Rotterdam and she was able to beat England’s native talent Lisa Whiteside in the final of the featherweight (57kg) with one-point difference. 

Ireland produced gold medals in the previous editions of the EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships and all of them have been captured by Katie Taylor. The 25-year-old Irish boxer used elegant style in the final of the lightweight (60kg) against her main rival, Russia’s Sofya Ochigava and took her fifth European title. Turkey’s Gulsum Tatar moved up to the light welterweight (64kg) and claimed her next European title in that category after beating Armine Sinabian who switched back from Sweden to her native country to Armenia.

Netherlands built up strong medal hopefuls from 2008 and their No.1 Marichelle De Jong was already the main favourite for the gold at the welterweight (69kg) in Rotterdam. She defeated such strong opponents as Azerbaijan’s ex-Russian Elena Vystropova, Germany’s Nadine Apetz, Poland’s Katarzyna Furmaniak and Ukraine’s Maria Badulina during the road to the title of the weight class. Netherlands’ second finalist Nouchka Fontijn began boxing only four years earlier than the Rotterdam edition but advanced to the title bout of the middleweight (75kg). Fontijn was near to beat Russia’s veteran Nadezhda Torlopova but her experiences were not enough to get the title in the front of the home crowd. 

Russia’s 19-year-old Svetlana Kosova moved up two categories to reach the chance to compete for her country in Rotterdam. Kosova dominated all of her fights with her speed and defeated Poland’s Sylwia Kusiak in the final of the light heavyweight (81kg). Turkey’s Semsi Yarali claimed silver in the 2009 edition and following her top rival Torlopova moved down two categories due to Olympic Games, she bagged the gold in Rotterdam. The experienced Turkish boxer was slightly better than Russia’s veteran Irina Sinetskaya in the final of the heavyweight (+81kg). 

List of the winners in the 2011 European Women’s Boxing Championships

  • Light flyweight (48kg): Svetlana Gnevanova, Russia
  • Flyweight (51kg): Nicola Adams, England
  • Bantamweight (54kg): Elena Saveleva, Russia 
  • Featherweight (57kg): Natalia Biryuk, Ukraine 
  • Lightweight (60kg): Katie Taylor, Ireland
  • Light welterweight (64kg): Gulsum Tatar, Turkey 
  • Welterweight (69kg): Marichelle De Jong, Netherlands 
  • Middleweight (75kg): Nadezhda Torlopova, Russia
  • Light Heavyweight (81kg): Svetlana Kosova, Russia
  • Heavyweight (+81kg): Semsi Yarali, Turkey  
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