Double Bronze at World University Boxing Championships for Team Ireland.
Christina Desmond (Limerick IT) and Kenneth Okungbowa (Athlone IT) both collected bronze medals at the 2016 World University Boxing Championships in Chaing Mai, Thailand last week.
Christina and Kenneth were part of a five-person Irish team who travelled to Thailand along with two officials Paul Desmond (Team Manager) and Paddy Gallagher (team Coach). The other three boxers to take part were Ceire Smith from (Dublin City University), Conor Wallace and Gary McKenna both from Ulster University.
Christina Desmond was first to capture a medal as she won her quarter final bout 3-0 in the 75kg weight division over Zura Kussainova from Kazakhstan. That win guaranteed Christina at least a bronze medal and set her up for a semi-final contest against Poland’s Natalia Hollinska. Cork native Desmond gave her all in what was an incredibly good fight but Hollinska just pipped the win and had her hand raised at the end, she later went on to be crowned champion in the weight.
Kenneth Okungbowa who has been an elite finalist at Irish senior level in 2015 was boxing in the 91kg weight division and won bronze after winning his quarter final on a split decision against Tadas Tamasuskas (Lithuania). In the semi-final two cuts above either eyes sustained in the quarter finals were to be a major problem for Okungbowa as he had to be diligent in defense but also attacked his French opponent Dylan Bregeon with zest from the start. However, the French fighter was able to cope with what Okungbowa had to offer and was a 3-0 winner of the contest.
Conor Wallace defeated by TKOI3 in the last 16 of the 75kg category by Valerii Kharlamov from the Ukraine, his Ulster University colleague Gary McKenna was defeated in the 60kg class losing out 3-0 to Temirian Osomonov from Kyrgyzstan, mean while Ceire Smith was cruelly denied 2-1 in the quarter final of the 51kg division by French fighter Wassila Lkhadiri.
The tournament was held in Chaing Mai University and was really well run with all the Irish team and management praising the organising committee.