Fantastic Irish performance in the Minsk 2013 European Boxing Championships

07 November 2020 News

The 40th edition of the European Boxing Championships opened the new Rio Olympic cycle in 2013 which event was held in the Belarusian capital, in Minsk. Russia topped the medal table with five gold medals while Wales’ Andrew Selby defended his throne at the flyweight (kg). Ireland has done a remarkable performance with fantastic two gold and two silver medals in Minsk.

Minsk hosted the European Boxing Championships first in 1998 and their government supported the event with huge amount of sources to arrange a remarkable competition. Boxers could attend in the 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships in 10 categories from the light flyweight (49kg) up to the super heavyweight (+91kg).

The first competition day of the 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships was June 1 in Minsk while the finals were held on June 8. The remaining 40 boxers could rest after the busy quarter-finals on June 6 before their important semi-finals. The new 10-must scoring system has been introduced in the 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships following the decision of the AIBA Executive Committee.

Altogether 208 boxers attended in the Minsk 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships. Two rounds of preliminaries were held at the flyweight (52kg), bantamweight (56kg), at the lightweight (60kg), at the light welterweight (64kg), at the welterweight (69kg), at the middleweight (75kg), at the light heavyweight (81kg), and at the heavyweight (91kg) in Minsk.

The following 36 nations attended in the 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships in Minsk: Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine and Wales.

Azerbaijan, Belarus, Hungary, Ireland, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine attended with maximum number of 10 boxers in the Minsk 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships. Germany sent nine boxers to the 40th European Boxing Championships, the light flyweight (49kg) was absent for them. England and Georgia both represented the continental event with eight boxers while Austria and Sweden sent only one athlete to Minsk.

Russia won the medal table and the team standings with their five gold medals in the Minsk 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships. Ireland achieved fantastic two gold and two silver medals in the event and became runner-up in the medal table. Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Wales achieved the remaining gold medals in the Belarusian capital.

The host Belarusian team won one silver and three bronze medals on home soil and ranked sixth in the medal table. Germany, Moldova, Netherlands, Romania, England, Hungary, Armenia and France had boxers in the semi-finals which meant altogether only 14 countries out of the participating 36 could get a medal in Minsk.

In the opening final of the 2013 EUBC European Boxing Championships, Russia’s London 2012 Olympic Games bronze medallist David Ayrapetyan walked over to the gold against Ireland’s two-time Olympics bronze medallist Patrick Barnes. Following his continental title in 2006, the Russian boxer secured his second gold medal in the history of the European Boxing Championships.

Two top boxers advanced to the final of the flyweight (52kg) in Minsk as Wales’ national hero, AIBA World Championships silver medallist Andrew Selby and Ireland’s London 2012 Olympics bronze medallist Michael Conlan. Selby’s serious right jabs were enough for him to beat his Irish rival who proved also sensational footwork against the Welshman titleholder. Selby became the first ever British boxer to successfully defend his European boxing title.

Ireland’s London 2012 Olympic Games silver medallist John Joseph Nevin used up his longer hands against Ukraine’s National Champion Mykola Butsenko in the final of the bantamweight (56kg) and tried to keep the fighting distance. The Irish counterpuncher dominated the first and the second rounds and he could follow his well-built tactic and received his first ever gold medal in the European Boxing Championships.

The host nation’s only finalist in Minsk, Vazgen Safaryants who was silver and bronze medallist in the previous editions of the European Boxing Championships. His opponent was Ukraine’s London 2012 Olympian Pavlo Ishchenko who tried to replace their superstar two-time Olympic Champion Vasyl Lomachenko. The Ukrainian lightweight (60kg) boxer started better their contest in spite of the Belarussian southpaw’s efforts, Ishchenko’s hand was raised after the final bell.

The light welterweight (64kg) was not the most successful category for the Russian contingent in the recent years but they found their best option in Minsk. Their newly crowned National Champion Armen Zakaryan awarded the best boxer trophy in the Bocskai Memorial Tournament earlier in the year and did not give any chance to Moldova’s new sensation Dmitri Galagot in the final of the event.

Russia’s former EUBC European Youth Champion Aleksandr Besputin eliminated Ukraine’s Bogdan Shelestyuk in the semi-final and met with Germany’s Armenian-descent 21-year-old Araik Marutjan for the gold. The Russian southpaw could not repeat his amazing semi-final performance and Marutjan’s lethal right jabs were serious in the first round. The German welterweight (69 kg) boxer tried to use up his height advantage but Besputin was able to turn back their tight battle.

Ireland’s European Olympic Hopes 19-22 Champion Jason Quigley shocked Ukraine’s AIBA World Champion Ievgen Khytrov in the semi-final and continued the winning path in the final of the middleweight (75kg). The Irish boxer’s counter-attacks were efficient against Romania’s AIBA World Championships bronze medallist Bogdan Juratoni who attacked from the first seconds in the high quality contest. Quigley became the second Irish gold medallist in Minsk and kept his unbeaten series which started on February 2012.

Russia’s previous silver medallist Nikita Ivanov and Netherlands’ World Military Games winner Peter Mullenberg arranged one of the best final fight in Minsk. Ivanov had powerful punches but the victory was not so easy for him because the Dutch No.1 also tried to do his best during the whole battle. Finally, Ivanov could celebrate his first ever continental title which was the fourth Russian gold medal in the championships. Mullenberg’s silver was the first medal for the Netherlands in the European Championships since the 1993 Bursa event.

Azerbaijan’s London 2012 Olympic Games bronze medallist 20-year-old Teymur Mammadov tried to defend his throne in Minsk against Russia’s former European Youth Champion Aleksey Egorov. The Russian heavyweight boxer (91 kg) shocked his rival in the opening round when the referee counted twice to Mammadov following Egorov’s strong punches. The referee stopped the contest in the end of the second round after his heavy blows.

Azerbaijan’s current AIBA World Champion Mahammadrasul Majidov and Russia’s former European Champion Sergey Kuzmin have done another high quality final in Minsk. Majidov won the first round in their bout but the 125kg pounder Russian equalized their top contest in the second frame. The rhythm of the contest was different as the previous super heavyweight (+91 kg) battles but finally Kuzmin was too tired in the last three minutes therefore Majidov could celebrate Azerbaijan’s only gold medal in Minsk.

List of the winners in the 2013 European Boxing Championships

  • Light flyweight (49kg): David Ayrapetyan, Russia
  • Flyweight (52kg): Andrew Selby, Wales
  • Bantamweight (56kg): John Joseph Nevin, Ireland
  • Lightweight (60kg): Pavlo Ishchenko, Ukraine
  • Light welterweight (64kg): Armen Zakaryan, Russia
  • Welterweight (69kg): Aleksandr Besputin, Russia
  • Middleweight (75kg): Jason Quigley, Ireland
  • Light heavyweight (81kg): Nikita Ivanov, Russia
  • Heavyweight (91kg): Aleksey Egorov, Russia
  • Super Heavyweight (+91kg): Mahammadrasul Majidov, Azerbaijan
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