Young Dub duo rise to elite level in Senior Debut

by Jonny Stapleton
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Jonny Stapleton

Two young Dublin fight talents will be hoping to prove the ‘if your good enough your old enough adage’ correct over the coming weeks.

Heavyweight hero Jack Marley and fabulous featherweight Niamh Fay have been selected to represent their country at Elite level for the first time.

Both fighters won gold at their respective weights at the European U-22 Championships in Croatia in late March and have been rewarded for their success with senior selection.

Fay and her trademark fluorescent odd socks will grace the big stage in Turkey over the coming two weeks as the teen prospect has been selected to represent Ireland at the Women’s World Championships.

The Ballyboughal fighter has won European gold at School Girl, Junior, and U-22 level and will now look to secure a first world medal in her first adult International tournament.

Fay is Ireland’s 54kg representative in Istanbul and is the only Dub on a young but strong nine-person team.

Dublin darling Kellie Harrington has been denied the chance to win a second-world gold by injury. The Olympic gold medal winner finished top of the World podium in 2018 and was hoping to repeat the feat in the first major tournament since her Tokyo heroics but didn’t travel with the team

“I’m devastated not to be competing at the Worlds. Training was going great, and I know I was the woman to beat in Turkey but– timing is everything, and there just isn’t enough time to heal before boxing starts,” Harrington explained.

“I have to prioritise my long-term health and fitness. Qualifying for Paris is still the goal. I’ll be rooting for all our Team Ireland boxers at the Worlds – it’s a strong, skillful team.”

2 October 2021; Jack Marley of Monkstown Boxing Club, Dublin, celebrates after his victory over Marcin Skalski of Athlone Boxing Club, Westmeath, during their 92kg bout at the IABA National Elite Boxing Championships Finals in the National Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

The Irish team to compete at the Men’s European Elite Championships between May 21 to 31 has yet to be officially confirmed but Jack Marley (inset) will travel.

The back-to-back European Under-22 medal winner was will be let off the leash and senior international level having cemented his status as one of Europe’s top big men prospects.

The Monkstown BC man was held back at world level last year but the High-Performance National Elite Champion is now adult ready and he travels to Armenia.

Marley’s Monkstown BC team mate Sean Mari has also been selected and will sport the Irish crest again this month.

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