The teenagers dominated the Antalya 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships05 November 2020
The 39th edition of the European Boxing Championships was the third elite continental event for the male boxers in the London 2012 Olympic cycle which took place in Antalya, Turkey in 2011. None of the titleholders were able to defend their thrones in Antalya where two of the 17-year-old talents as Salman Alizada of Azerbaijan and Joseph Ward of Ireland celebrated gold medals.
Turkey welcomed the boxers of the European Boxing Championships at the very first time in Bursa in 1993 and after 18 years of break, the competition returned to the country. The Turkish Boxing Federation hosted the Turkish Prime Ministry Tournament on April 2010 with great success and also the 1st AIBA Women’s Youth & Junior Boxing Championships on May 2011. The 2011 edition of the European Boxing Championships was hosted by the European Boxing Confederation together with the Turkish Boxing Federation.
Altogether fights of 10 weight classes were in the schedule of the Antalya 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships. The featherweight (57kg) was cancelled from the official program of the boxing events due reducing the categories from 11 to 10. The weight limit of the light flyweight changed to 49kg while the flyweight to 52 and the bantamweight to 56kg which instructions were effective from September 1.
The first competition day of the 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships was June 17 in Antalya while the finals were held on June 24. A rest day was introduced once again in the continental event after the quarter-finals of the 2011 edition on June 22.
The total number of the boxers reached 250 in the Antalya 2011 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), at the heavyweight (91kg) and also at the super heavyweight (+91kg) in Antalya.
The following 40 nations attended in the 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships in Antalya: Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, F.Y.R. of Macedonia, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine, and Wales.
Record number of 10 nations such as Azerbaijan, Belarus, England, France, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine attended with maximum number of 10 boxers in the Antalya 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships. Romania sent nine boxers to the event, their gap was the light flyweight (49kg) in Antalya.
Russia topped the medal table with two gold and four silver medals in the Antalya 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships where some of their top stars missed the event and fully focused to the qualification tournaments. Azerbaijan, Ireland and Wales each won two gold medals in the event which was their record in the history of the European Boxing Championships until 2011.
Host Turkey and Moldova both achieved one gold medal in 2011 while altogether 18 nations took at least one bronze in Antalya. Italy, Bulgaria, England, Belarus, Georgia, Croatia, Romania, Ukraine, Armenia, France, Germany and Hungary all were on the medal table of the competition. Ukraine claimed only two bronze medals but their stars as Vasyl Lomachenko and Oleksandr Usyk missed the event.
Azerbaijan’s AIBA Youth World Champion 17-year-old Salman Alizada led 6:4 after the first three minutes against former National Champion Belik Galanov but the 22-year-old Russian boxer equalized the close fight until the end of the second round at the light flyweight (49kg). The last round was also a real battle between the two small boxers and finally teenager Salman Alizada could celebrate his first major victory among the elite age group. Azerbaijan’s Salman Alizada became the youngest winner of the event as he was born only on December 1 in 1993.
Wales’ pride two-times European Championships bronze medallist 23-year-old Andrew Selby and three-times European Champion veteran Georgiy Balakshin also did a spectacular fight at the flyweight (52kg) in Ankara. Andrew Selby won a historical gold medal for Wales in Ankara after beating his 31-year-old Russian opponent by 13:10 due his great final round. Selby became the first Welshman who could win a European title.
Moldova’s Beijing Olympic Games bronze medallist Veaceslav Gojan did not have too many successes at the international level since 2008 therefore it was a little surprise that he could advance to the final. The 28-year-old boxer also did his very best and acquired a historical gold medal for Moldova against Russian National Champion Dmitriy Polyanskiy at their bantamweight (56kg) bout where the final verdict was 16:14 to Gojan.
Turkey’s first finalist was Fatih Keles who caused a huge surprise before the home crowd in Ankara where he triumphed over Italy’s reigning AIBA World Champion Domenico Valentino in an extremely close contest. The final scoring was incredible draw 17:17 but finally local hero Fatih Keles won the lightweight (60kg) gold medal with accepted scores.
Former AIBA Youth World Champion 21-year-old Raymond Moylette could not reach a medal at the Irish National Championships in February due his injury but despite of his unsuccessful competition he has been involved to the national team in Ankara. It was more than a good decision from head coach Mr. Billy Walsh who supported his preparations. he 21-yar-old Irish fighter defeated England’s flag bearer, Commonwealth Games winner and European Championships silver medallist Thomas Stalker by 18:10 at the light welterweight (64kg).
At the welterweight (69kg) final, Commonwealth Champion Fred Evans continued Wales’ winning series in the gold medal bouts. The 20-year-old athlete led by 10:5 after two rounds and he could save his advantage against Belarus’ former European Champion ten years older Mahamad Nurudzinau and delivered the second Welsh gold medal on the day.
Former European Junior Champion 24-year-old Maksim Koptyakov of Russia had not so easy job to beat AIBA World Championships bronze medallist local favourite Adem Kilicci of Turkey in the final of the middleweight (75kg). Despite of the fact that Kilicci could fight in a home ring, Koptyakov demonstrated his technical skills and won the Antalya 2011 EUBC European Boxing Championships in that weight category.
Ireland’s 17-year-old AIBA Youth World Champion Joe Ward was magnificent at the National Championships in February 2011 when he defeated Olympic Games silver medallist Kenneth Egan in his first elite tournament. The super talented Irish teenager continued his great performance showed his counter-puncher style and defeated Russia’s star Nikita Ivanov who suffered his first loss at the European final in 2011.
Azerbaijan’s 18-year-old Teymur Mammadov had only two losses in 2010 as a youth boxer and following those strong results, he won the Bocskai Memorial Tournament in February 2011 which was his first international elite tournament. He triumphed over Hungary’s Jozsef Darmos only with accepted scores during his opening heavyweight (91kg) bout but followed that short victory, the tall boxer advanced to the final where Mammadov was too strong for Bulgaria’s top favourite Tervel Pulev.
Italy’s super heavyweight (+91kg) boxer Beijing 2008 Olympic Games winner and two-time AIBA World Champion Roberto Cammarelle travelled to Ankara to achieve his first European title but unexpectedly he was defeated by Russia’s 22-year-old newcomer Magomed Omarov in a spectacular bout.
List of the winners in the 2011 European Boxing Championships
- Light flyweight (49kg): Salman Alizada, Azerbaijan
- Flyweight (52kg): Andrew Selby, Wales
- Bantamweight (56kg): Veaceslav Gojan, Moldova
- Lightweight (60kg): Fatih Keles, Turkey
- Light welterweight (64kg): Raymond Moylette, Ireland
- Welterweight (69kg): Fred Evans, Wales
- Middleweight (75kg): Maksim Koptyakov, Russia
- Light heavyweight (81kg): Joseph Ward, Ireland
- Heavyweight (91kg): Teymur Mammadov, Azerbaijan
- Super Heavyweight (+91kg): Magomed Omarov, Russia