EOC, Krakow-Małopolska agree on preliminary list of sports for European Games

The European Olympic Committees (EOC) this weekend welcomed a delegation from Poland to the CONI headquarters in Rome for discussions on the 3rd edition of the European Games (EG), which are scheduled to take place in Krakow-Małopolska in summer 2023.

The meeting was led by EOC Acting President Niels Nygaard and Secretary General Raffaele Pagnozzi and attended by representatives of the Polish federal, regional and municipal governments, including Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State Assets Jacek Sasin, Polish Minister of Sport Danuta Dmowska-Andrzejuk, Mayor of Kraków Jacek Majchrowski, and the Marshal of the Małopolska Region, Witold Kozłowski. A team from the Polish Olympic Committee headed by President Andrzej Krasnicki was also in attendance.  

Discussions centred on preparations for the Games, the proposed sports programme, and the philosophy of the European Games, including potential opportunities for Poland, Krakow and the Małopolska Region.

“It was a highly productive meeting and we were very happy to see such a strong commitment from the Polish delegation,” said Acting President Nygaard. “It was a great start, we have worked as a team and reached concrete results, setting a precise roadmap for the future. We look forward to continuing ahead in the same spirit.

Poland’s Deputy Prime Minister Jacek Sasin underlined how the European Games are a great occasion to promote the country:

“The Polish government sees the economic and social opportunities related to the organisation of the EG 2023 in Kraków and Małopolska region.”

“As the plenipotentiary of the Polish government for the organisation of EG 2023, together with the Minister of Sport, I participated in a groundbreaking meeting with the EOC in Rome. I am pleased that we agreed jointly with all partners on the preliminary list of sports disciplines - this will allow specific investment plans to be made in the near future."

Polish Minister of Sport Danuta Dmowska-Andrzejuk delivered a report on the sports programme proposed by the Ministry of Sport in cooperation with the NOC of Poland, the Municipality of Krakow and the Małopolska Region. EOC Executive Committee Member Jozef Liba also presented a comprehensive overview on the sport proposal.

The two sides agreed on a preliminary list of 23 sports for the Games, subject to final negotiations with each of the European and International sports federations. A key criterium for selection was whether the sports will use the European Games as their continental championships and/or offer qualification for the Olympic Games Paris 2024.

The preliminary list is as follows:

•    Archery
•    Artistic swimming
•    Badminton        
•    Basketball 3x3
•    Beach handball    
•    Breaking
•    Canoe
     •    slalom
     •    sprint     
•    Cycling
     •    mountain bike
     •    road        
•    Fencing        
•    Gymnastics        
•    Judo       
•    Karate            
•    Modern pentathlon    
•    Mountain running
•    Rugby sevens        
•    Shooting
•    Ski jumping (summer)    
•    Sport climbing    
•    Table tennis        
•    Triathlon
•    Volleyball
     •    beach volleyball
     •    volleyball    
•    Weightlifting •    Wrestling

The meeting in Rome followed a recent three-day EOC inspection visit to the Polish hosts from 30 July-1 August.

“The presence in Rome of such a high-level delegation underscores the importance that your country and your government give to the organisation of the European Games,”

EOC Secretary General Pagnozzi told the Polish delegation.

EOC Coordination Commission Chair for Krakow-Małopolska 2023 Hasan Arat, who attended the meeting remotely due to travel restrictions, stressed that the EOC has many reasons to be happy that the European Games will take place in Poland and that the organisation of the event will also be a great opportunity for the country.

“The social benefits and the legacy for your nation from organising such an event can be huge,” he said. “For each host country, the European Games are an opportunity to engage with its citizens, to motivate volunteers, to inspire young people, to promote healthy lifestyles and to foster social inclusion.”

Polish NOC President Krasnicki said that he was very pleased with the discussions and outcomes of the meeting.

It was a very fruitful meeting during which many issues related to the organisation of Games were addressed.

There is common awareness on the importance of this event and determination to conclude all necessary decisions as soon as possible.

I am sure that by having the support from the Polish government with effective cooperation between the City of Krakow and the authorities from the Małopolska Region, we will be able to organise a great sport event in Poland in 2023.

EOC ExCo Member Zlatko Mateša provided context on the history and philosophy of the European Games, retracing the highlights of the continental Games from Baku 2015 to Minsk 2019.

It is a project of mutual benefit. The key word from our side is flexibility,

said Mateša, who also underlined the social benefits and legacies host nations can expect from organising such an event.

We don’t want you to build any extra infrastructure unless you will need it for future use. We are promoting a polycentric approach, with the involvement of many cities.

Please be assured that all the above can be gained without spending too much. Following the adoption of Olympic Agenda 2020, sustainability is a working principle for us. The Games, with the participation from 50 European countries, will strengthen the position of Poland also at the European Union level, improving its diplomatic channels.

Spyros Capralos, IOC Member and CoCom Chair both for the Baku 2015 and Minsk 2019 European Games, emphasised that the European Games are an integral part of the Olympic journey and

the inclusion of new sports in the programme will be an asset for the Games and for Poland.

The proposal of summer ski jumping, which is very popular in Poland, is an absolute novelty for the Games.

The full list of EOC and Polish Olympic Committee representatives was as follows:
MINISTRY OF STATE ASSETS:

MINISTRY OF SPORT:

KRAKOW:

MALOPOLSKA REGION:

POLISH OLYMPIC COMMITTEE:

EOC:

*unable to attend due to travel restrictions.

Olympic Federation of Ireland plans for the future

 

The Board of the Olympic Federation of Ireland today (23 July) announced the appointment of Nancy Chillingworth as Chef de Mission for Beijing 2022 and the renewal of CEO, Peter Sherrard’s, contract to 2024. The Federation has also opened its recruitment process for the role of Chef de Mission at the European Games in 2023 and the Olympic Games in 2024.

 

Nancy Chillingworth was Team Ireland’s Chef de Mission at this year’s Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne and is the OFI’s pre-Games training camp manager for the Tokyo Olympic Games, overseeing arrangements for athletes and performance staff in Fukuroi and Hamamatsu prior to entering the Olympic Village in Tokyo.

 

She is employed by the Olympic Federation of Ireland as Performance Manager since 2019 and is also working to drive the Federation’s Winter Sports Strategy. Chillingworth, who has a background in sports psychology, has served as Chair of Hockey Ireland’s High Performance Committee. She came to the OFI having worked as Player Development Manager with Rugby Players Ireland and before that, as Performance Director for Paralympics Ireland during the very successful London and Rio Games cycles.

 

The OFI Board has also renewed the contract for its CEO, Peter Sherrard, through to December 2024. Sherrard was appointed by the OFI in early 2018 through to 2020. The new contract will allow him to continue to grow the organisation and oversee its development through the Olympic Games of Tokyo in 2021, Beijing 2022 and Paris in 2024.

 

OFI President, Sarah Keane, welcomed the appointments,

 

“We are delighted to have secured Peter’s leadership for the coming Olympic Cycle. He has brought a tremendous amount of energy to the role and has succeeded in making hugely positive advances for the Federation in a short space of time. He has been excellent to work with and brings a highly professional approach. As a Board we are very happy to have secured his services through to 2024.

Peter Sherrard, CEO OFI

“We also congratulate Nancy Chillingworth on her appointment as Chef de Mission for Beijing 2022. Nancy has already been involved in the planning process for the Games, having completed a site visit to each of the three Olympic venues in China in November 2019. She has also proved herself as part of Tricia Heberle’s Tokyo Games leadership team, and as Chef de Mission for the Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne earlier this year. We are delighted to give her this well-deserved opportunity.”

 

Peter Sherrard OFI CEO said,

 

“I would like to thank Sarah Keane and the Board for making my job so fulfilling. Their strategic oversight and advice has been of major assistance to me in growing the OFI team and has made it much easier for me to deliver significant changes for the organisation over the past three years.

 

“I congratulate Nancy Chillingworth on her appointment as Chef de Mission for Beijing 2022. She has been a real asset to the Federation in the build up to Tokyo and we are very happy to have secured her expertise for this challenge in 2022.

 

Speaking on her appointment, Nancy Chillingworth, Team Ireland’s Chef de Mission for Beijing 2022 said, “This appointment is an honour for me and a project that I very much look forward to taking on. While a large part of my focus in the next year will be on preparation for the Tokyo Olympic Games, it is ideal from a planning perspective that I can also continue and the develop the work that has started on planning for Beijing 2022.”

 

The OFI also announced that it is opening a recruitment process for the position of Chef de Mission for the European Games in 2023 and the Paris Olympic Games in 2024. With the Tokyo Olympic Games taking place in 2021 under the leadership of Chef de Mission Tricia Heberle, it is important that we start planning early for the next cycle. The successful candidate will report to the Olympic Federation of Ireland’s CEO, Peter Sherrard, and will work closely with the Performance Directors, Coaches, NGBs, the Sport Ireland Institute and the Sports Institute of Northern Ireland.

 

Applications are invited until Thursday 13 August, and full details on the position and how to apply can be found HERE

2023 European Games, and 2024 Olympic Games

Team Ireland Chef de Mission Appointment Process

 

Background

 

The Chef de Mission (CDM) is responsible for leading Team Ireland’s preparations and performance at the Summer Olympic and European Games. The role requires strong leadership qualities, a detailed understanding of the Irish high performance system, and the ability to coordinate the multi-disciplinary functions required for a successful Games event.

 

The Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) will endeavour to appoint the best person for this role through a well-structured and transparent process.  This will include both a written submission as per the requirements of the CDM position and an interview.

 

This process should be the vehicle for appointing a CDM for European Games in 2023 (EG) and Summer Olympic Games in Paris 2024 (SOG).  While ideally it may be the same person, an individual’s circumstances may not allow for this, therefore some flexibility may be required.

Terms of the CDM Role

 

The role will ideally encompass oversight for two significant projects during the next Olympic cycle. Consequently, it will start in 2021, with increasing workloads required in 2022-2024.

 

EG Krakow                         9 June – 25 June                             2023

SOG Paris                           26 July – 11 August                        2024

 

Remuneration will be commensurate with experience and competencies.

 

Role requirements and responsibilities are listed below.

If you believe that your experience, skills and ambition meet the requirements of this role, please forward an application to careers@olympicsport.ie as per the below requirements:

Closing date for receipt of applications is 18:00hrs on Thursday 13 August 2020.

 

 

Team Ireland Chef de Mission (CDM)

Summer Olympic Games 2024, European Games 2023

 

Olympic Charter: Bye law to Rules 27 and 28 – Section 4 – Chef de Mission

During the period of the Olympic Games, the competitors, officials and other team personnel of a National Olympic Committee are placed under the management and responsibility of a Chef de Mission, appointed by his (or her) National Olympic Committee, to liaise with the IOC, the International Federations and the Organising Committee of the Olympic Games’.

 

Primary Role

To provide leadership, management and a high duty of care to Team Ireland athletes and staff at the Summer Olympic Games and European Games in order to deliver a cohesive and well organised level of service and support to enhance optimal performance.

 

 

Key Considerations for the CDM Role

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chef de Mission Role Requirements

 

Experience

 

Required Competencies

  1. Leadership

 

  1. Interpersonal

 

3.Business Management

 

  1. Personal Attributes

Desirable

 

Chef de Mission Role Responsibilities

  1. Leads and represents the Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) and Team Ireland (TI) members in all requirements and activities leading up to and at the Summer Olympics 2024 and European Games 2023;

 

  1. Leads operational and logistical planning requirements for both pre and in-games, working closely with the OFI Chief Executive Officer (CEO), staff and other key partners;

 

  1. In conjunction with the CEO and any other relevant key stakeholders, contributes to budget planning and decisions pertaining to investment and funding allocations for the conduct of all Olympic training, preparation events and value-add activities i.e. Holding Camp, team building activities;

 

  1. In collaboration with the CEO, and Games specific working groups, leads the identification and selection process for all staff, in particular Deputy Chef and Games Administrative support roles;

 

  1. Facilitates and contributes to the development of a Games orientation programme for all Team members prior to the Games i.e. Staff, Team Leaders, Coaches, SS/SM providers and Athletes;

 

  1. Works closely with the Athletes’ Commission and Athletes’ Commission Support Officer to ensure that the needs of athletes are being met and that the Commission can contribute to planning and relevant initiatives that align to the Athletes’ Commission Strategy;

 

  1. Liaises with various stakeholders, on behalf of the Team, namely funding and service partners, National Federations (NFs), athletes, coaches, managers, support team members, Games Organising Committee, Sport Ireland; other multi-sport organizations, High Commission or Consulate office, and other Chefs de Mission from NOCs;

 

  1. Is accountable for providing on-going relevant and timely information to all Team Ireland members and staff prior to and during the Games e.g. qualification and competition information, accreditation requirements, travel arrangements etc;

 

  1. Ensures that there is a high standard of preventative care and on-going education in the fields of anti-doping and manipulation of competition and reinforces the anti-doping and integrity messages.

 

  1. Ensures adherence of team and team members to OFI and IOC regulations / programmes as per OFI athlete agreements, national federation agreements, and IOC regulations.

 

  1. Represents Team Ireland at CDM meetings before and during the Games and addresses team concerns and or issues that arise, with the host Organising Committee and or appropriate personnel;

 

  1. Liaises with the Team Ireland Medical Team (Doctor and Physio/s) to ensure adherence to the OFI medical Policy and the provision of a high-quality medical support and physiotherapy care is provided to athletes and staff, including maintaining appropriate medical records of all consultations confidential and secure;

 

  1. Works closely with Team Leaders and/or Coaches to establish understanding of the OFI values and open lines of communication and accountability for the well-being and performance of all athletes and staff in their care;

 

  1. Establishes an appropriate day to day support, communication and information sharing system for all staff, whether they are located in the village or at outlying residential locations.

 

  1. Participates as a member of the Issues Management Team dealing with any major issues or crisis situations during the Games, in the first instance reporting to the CEO;

 

  1. Responsible for the preparation of any official NOC Games appeals, ensuring appropriate decision-making and communications with the CEO and relevant parties before this occurs;

 

  1. Works closely with the CEO in respect of the PR and communications strategy and any requirements or initiatives being facilitated through sponsors, external media partners and/or third parties;

 

  1. Ensures that social media protocols are in place and communicated to all Team Ireland members, respect of the appropriate use of social media before and during the Games;

 

  1. In conjunction with the CEO and primary Team Ireland media contact, assists in delivery of all Games media requests and opportunities for interviews and promotion of Team Ireland athletes and staff;

 

  1. Prepares, in conjunction with OFI staff, progress reports (Board Updates) and a final report for presentation to the OFI Board, Executive Committee, Athletes’ Commission and other key partners as required;

 

  1. Contributes to the formulation of appropriate Games debriefing and review mechanisms to capture feedback and relevant information from all Team Ireland members in respect of planning and the Games experience;

 

  1. Liaises with the Athletes’ Commission in determining review mechanisms that compliment rather than duplicate their processes for gathering athlete feedback on Games experience;

 

  1. Performs other duties as required and assigned by the CEO throughout the duration of the organisation and participation of Team Ireland at the Games and of the Team.

 

Accountable to – the CEO

 

Key Relationships – OFI President and Executive Committee, Athletes’ Commission and staff, Sport Irelans Institute, Sport Ireland, Sport Northern Ireland, National Federations, host Organising Committees, Team Ireland support staff, Team Leaders, athletes and sport specific staff.

GYMNASTICS IN EYOF

 

What to expect

The gymnastics venue is the National Gymnastics Arena (MGA) which is a bit of a drive from the centre but is close to the Athletes Village.

Team Ireland is represented by two young, talented gymnasts, Caoimhe Donohoe and Eve McGibbon who will compete in the All Around event – which is a combined event comprised of the Balance Beam, a Floor Routine, Uneven Bars and a Vault.

Athletes are given scores based on the difficulty of their routine, and their execution of it, and they have the opportunity to get into finals – both of the overall All-Around finals, and of the individual finals of each event.

Originally Team Ireland also included Galway’s Blaithnead Higgins, who had to withdraw and will now begin her preparation and training for the senior age and prepare for the 2020 Programme.

Athletes

Caoimhe Donohoe

From:

  Galway

Event: All-Around - Beam, Floor, Uneven Bars, Vault

Club: Renmore Gymnastics Club

Coach: Sally Batley

 

Competition

All Around 23-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
All Around 24-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
All Around 25-Jul 12:00:00 14:15:00 FINAL
Uneven Bars 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Vault 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Beam 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Floor 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL

 

Eve McGibbon

From:

  Antrim

Event: All-Around - Beam, Floor, Uneven Bars, Vault

Club: Salto Lisburn Gymnastics Club

Coach: Emma Gorman

Competition

All Around 23-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
All Around 24-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
All Around 25-Jul 12:00:00 14:15:00 FINAL
Uneven Bars 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Vault 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Beam 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Floor 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL

 

Schedule

 

Caoimhe Donohoe All Around 23-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
Eve McGibbon All Around 23-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
Caoimhe Donohoe All Around 24-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
Eve McGibbon All Around 24-Jul 10:00:00 19:00:00 Qualifying Round
Caoimhe Donohoe All Around 25-Jul 12:00:00 14:15:00 FINAL
Eve McGibbon All Around 25-Jul 12:00:00 14:15:00 FINAL
Caoimhe Donohoe Uneven Bars 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Caoimhe Donohoe Vault 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Eve McGibbon Uneven Bars 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Eve McGibbon Vault 26-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Caoimhe Donohoe Beam 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Caoimhe Donohoe Floor 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Eve McGibbon Beam 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL
Eve McGibbon Floor 27-Jul 14:00:00 16:00:00 FINAL

 

CYCLING IN EYOF

What to expect

The cycling in the EYOF take place in the Velopark BMX cycling complex located on the Caspian seaside, a venue surrounded with beautiful scenery and plenty of cycling lanes!

The Individual Time Trials are timed events, and they take place near Shikhov beach, with the Girl’s event starting at 10am (local time) or 7am Irish time on the 23 July, and the Boy’s event starts at 5pm local time, or 2pm Irish time. Both races are 10km long – on one looped circuit. The start and finish is in the Velopark, and the race profile is relatively flat, with a slight 1.7km hill about 1.5km from the finish.

The Road Races are bunch events which take place on the 25th July. The Girl’s event at 10am local time (7am Irish time) is a 50km race, two laps of a 25km circuit. The Boy’s event starts at 5pm local time (2pm Irish time) and is a 75km race, three laps of the 25km circuit.

The circuit itself starts and finishes in the Velopark, and includes a short and sharp tough hilly section in the city centre. It also includes the same 1.7km drag that the cyclists will have raced on in the Time Trial earlier in the week.

At the last edition of the EYOF Team Ireland enjoyed success in the Girl’s Time Trial, with Lara Gillespie winning a silver medal.

Athletes

Adam Gilsenan

From:

  Meath

Event:   Time Trial and Road Race

Club: Bohermeen CC

Coach:  Matteo Cigala

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

Aoife O’Brien

From:

  Mullingar, Co. Westmeath

Event:  Time Trial and Road Race

Club: Lakeside Wheelers

Coach:  Fran Meehan

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

Caoimhe May

From:

  Dublin

Event:  Time Trial and Road Race

Club: Scott Orwell Wheelers

Coach: Orla Hendron

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

Darren Rafferty

From:

Craigavon

Event: Time Trial and Road Race

Club: Island Wheelers CC

Coach: Dig Deep Coaching

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

Erin Creighton

From:

Antrim

Event:  Time Trial and Road Race

Club: McConvey Cycles

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

Mark McGarry

From:

  Waterford

Event: Time Trial and Road Race

Club: Dungarvan CC

Competing: Time Trial on Tues 23 July, Road Race on Thurs 25 July

 

Schedule

Aoife O'Brien Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Caoimhe May Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Erin Creighton Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Adam Gilsenan Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00
Darren Rafferty Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00
Mark McGarry Individual Time Trial 23-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00
Aoife O'Brien Individual Road Race 25-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Caoimhe May Individual Road Race 25-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Erin Creighton Individual Road Race 25-Jul 10:00:00 12:30:00
Adam Gilsenan Individual Road Race 25-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00
Darren Rafferty Individual Road Race 25-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00
Mark McGarry Individual Road Race 25-Jul 17:00:00 19:30:00

 

“This is the best moment of my life – by a mile” – Walker secures sensational gold for Ireland

*All interviews on soundcloud*

30 June 2019

 

Kurt Walker has secured a gold medal for Ireland in sensational fashion this afternoon, with a unanimous decision win over Mykola Butsenko of Ukraine in the Bantamweight final.

 

The Antrim boxer put on a stunning exhibition in Minsk, taking all three rounds against Butsenko in what was a repeat of the 2017 European Elite semi-final, which Butsenko won.

 

Walker was on form from the off, landing some hard, clean punches from early on and managing to keep his composure in the face of some pressure from the Ukrainian. Walker continued to dominate though as the rounds ticked on, and stormed home to an unforgettable unanimous decision.

 

“I actually can’t describe how I’m feeling, it’s absolutely unbelievable,” he said afterwards. “To come here at the start and believe I’ll win gold, but for it to actually happen is just on a different level.

 

“He was very tough, he’s been about. This was his third European final so he’s very experienced and he kept coming and coming, so I’m just glad I was able to fight through it. Two years ago in the European Championships he beat me in the semis 5-0 and it just shows I’ve grown so much as a boxer and a man in the last two years

 

“The coaches need so much credit, the game plan it was unbelievable and I knew it was working. I came back after the first round and they were both buzzing and they’re never usually like that! You usually have to do more and more, but they were both buzzing and they said keep picking it up, and thankfully I did. It’s unbelievable – it was everything coming true. You have these dreams of it happening, but when it actually does happen you don’t know what to do, you just feel so happy it’s unbelievable.”

 

Earlier on in the day, Team Ireland boxing captain Kellie Harrington was withdrawn from her Lightweight final due to injury but was absolutely thrilled to be coming home to Ireland with a silver medal.

 

“It’s a great achievement to come out here and get a silver medal, as well as the team picking up six medals. I’m delighted to be a part of such an amazing team and to bring back a silver medal for my country. I’m disappointed to not be fighting today in the finals but sometimes you have to look after yourself as number one priority, we have a bigger picture in mind. It was the right thing, but it still hurts, and a silver medal is nothing to be frowned upon - another major medal to take back home to add to the collection, so I’m happy.

 

“As team captain coming out here with such a strong team, to be honest I didn’t expect anything different. We got what we came out here for and that’s all that can be asked of us and of the team. I’m very proud of the team and absolutely honoured to be team captain of both male and female.”

 

 

In track cycling the last athletes in competition are the Women’s Madison of Lydia Boylan and Lydia Gurley and JB Murphy in the Men’s Omnium. Earlier this morning Mia Griffin finished the Women’s Individual Pursuit with a personal best time of 3.40.444.

 

BOXING RESULTS

 

Men’s Bantamweight

Kurt Walker (IRL) W Vs Mykola Butsenko (UKR) 29-28, 30-27, 30-27, 29-28, 30-27

 

 

DAY TEN SCHEDULE (IRISH TIME):

12:28 Cycling Track – Lydia Boylan & Lydia Gurley (IRL) Women’s Madison

14:14 Cycling Track – JB Murphy Men’s Omnium

European Games Gold Medallist Kurt Walker has been named as the Team Ireland Flagbearer for the Closing Ceremony of the Games in Minsk. Walker was selected following his sensational win in the Sports Palace Uruchie in Minsk, when he beat Mykola Butsenko from Ukraine 5-0 in the Men’s Bantamweight -56kg today.

 

“Today was the highlight of my life,” Walker said on learning about the selection, “It’s an absolute honour for me. Coming here the last thing this was the last thing I expected. I’m so honoured to be carrying the flag for Ireland. Honestly, I was so surprised. It’s going to be an unbelievable experience, especially having everyone from Team Ireland marching behind me.”

 

The announcement was made by Team Ireland Chef de Mission Tricia Heberle once competition had finished for all athletes, “There have been a range of outstanding performances which made it very difficult to decide who carries the flag, it was a difficult decision. But after today it became very clear that there was one person who stood out and we are delighted to select Kurt as the flagbearer for the Closing Ceremony.”

 

During the European Games sixty-three Irish athletes competed across nine sports, with the ten day programme stacked with personal bests, season bests and top performances from a range of athletes from development to elite. The fourteen top six positions at the European Games for Team Ireland included one gold, two silvers and four bronze medals.

 

Tomorrow Team Ireland athletes from boxing, badminton and cycling, including all medallists will be arriving into Dublin Airport at 11.15 am. Full details can be found HERE.

1 July at 11.15 in Dublin Airport T1 Arrivals (Area 14)

 

Team Ireland athletes from Boxing, Badminton and Cycling will be arriving in Dublin Airport on Monday 1 July at 11.15am on Flight LH979. The Team Ireland medal tally is currently seven, with six boxing medals and one badminton medal already guaranteed.

 

What                    Homecoming for European Games Athletes

When                   Monday July 1

Gather 10:45 at arrivals, Terminal 1, Dublin Airport

Area 14 will only open at 11:00

Duration              Expected 11:15 – 12:15 (Athletes will not collect bags prior to the event so we expect it to commence soon after the scheduled arrival of flight LH978 FRA DUB at 11:00

Running order    11:00     Opening of Area 14 – Entrance for family, friends, supporters and media through Arrivals Level, Terminal 1

11:15     Entrance of athletes into Area 14, photos and meeting with families

11:30     Welcome from Minister and OFI

11:45     Media interviews, photos and meet and greet

12:15     Ends

Who                    Minister Ross, OFI, 35 Athletes from boxing, badminton and cycling

 

RSVP           HEATHER BOYLE heather@olympicsport.ie

 

NOTES:

 

For information, the athletes returning on July 1 will be from Boxing, Badminton and Ccling and have 35 in the travelling party.

 

Boxers Regan Daly, Kellie Harrington, Michael Nevin, Kurt Walker, Grainne Walsh and Michaela Walsh are already guaranteed medals.

 

Badminton due Chloe Magee and Sam Magee will also be bringing home a medal after booking a place in the semi-final of the Mixed Doubles.

 

There will be an opportunity to interview athletes.

On the final day of the competition at the European Games a decision has been made to withdraw Kellie Harrington from her final fight in the Women’s Light -60kg today due to injury. Harrington sustained a hand injury in the semi-final bout with Agnes Alexiusson from Sweden, and she has been deemed unfit to box.

 

Every attempt was made by the medical staff to manage the injury to her right thumb, to give Harrington an opportunity to compete, but this morning the decision was made that she would be withdrawn. Harrington will receive the silver medal in the Women’s Light -60kg today, and now all attention will be placed on Kurt Walker who is competing for the gold medal in the Men’s Bantam at 11.30 Irish time.

 

“It’s been a fantastic competition for Kellie,” commented Performance Director Bernard Dunne, “it’s unfortunate this injury has arisen, but the right decision has been made that she doesn’t compete. It is unfortunate that hand injuries are part and parcel of boxing, but we need to manage it the right way to ensure a quick return to action.

 

“Kellie has Europeans and Worlds before the year is out and upcoming Olympic qualification events that we are looking forward to. In making this decision we had to take in the big picture to ensure that we don’t further injure the hand. Our focus is now on Kurt.”

 

Harrington added, “I’m disappointed to not be competing but I understand that there’s a bigger picture to be taken into account. It would be too much of a risk to go in there and have another setback. I totally respect the advice of the medical staff and the decision of the Performance Director.

 

“While I’m disappointed, I’m still going to be there for Kurt my teammate, as captain. It’s been an honour to be captain of this boxing team, and I’m going to be cheering him on and I am can’t wait to watch our team collect their medals, and I will carry my silver medal with pride.

 

“I’m looking forward to getting home, recovering and getting back at it as soon as possible. We came out here having had a fantastic training camp and were excited about testing ourselves against the best in Europe blocks, and we did that. It’s been a fantastic competition for the Irish boxing team and I’m going to continue to trust the team that’s supporting me.”

 

There will be no further comment until the final athletes have finished competition later today. Boxing and cycling is on the schedule, and the focus for the boxing team will be on Kurt Walker who is competing in the Final at 11:30 Irish time.

 

 

DAY TEN SCHEDULE (IRISH TIME):

07:25 Cycling Track – JB Murphy Men’s Omnium

07:50 Cycling Track – Mia Griffin Women’s Individual Pursuit

10:00 Badminton – Mixed Doubles - Medal Ceremony (Chloe and Sam Magee)

11:05 Boxing – Regan Buckley - Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Light Fly -49kg

11:30 Boxing – Kurt Walker Vs Mykola Butsenko (UKR) Men’s Bantam -56kg

12:20 Boxing – Michael Nevin - Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Middle -75kg

12:28 Cycling Track – Lydia Boylan & Lydia Gurley (IRL) Women’s Madison

 

All the Team Ireland action was in the velodrome on Saturday evening, with Shannon McCurley competing in the Women’s Omnium and Mark Downey and Fintan Ryan racing the Men’s Madison at the European Games in Minsk.

 

McCurley finished 8th in the four-race event that was won by multiple world champion Kirsten Wild of the Netherlands. McCurley, who was the first Irish female track cyclist to compete at the Olympics when she raced the Women’s Keirin in Rio, has since switched her focus to endurance events, changing her physique and now mixing with the best endurance riders in the world.

 

Endurance is certainly the name of the game for the Omnium, which is a four race event, with points awarded to riders according to their finish position, and the overall winner is decided at the end of the final Points Race. Speaking after an aggressive finale, the Australian based cyclist said, “it was a really rough race, a bit different to what I’m used to. I’m used to really sprinting it out, and this was a very tactical race.

 

“I’m used to really sprinting it out, and it was a very tactical race. My plan was to go in and be aggressive, it was something I couldn’t do last year, so I leaned up and got a lot fitter since the world championships. I came in wanting a medal, but things didn’t go my way, I’m still getting there.”

 

In the Men’s Madison meanwhile, the newly formed pairing of Mark Downey and Fintan Ryan finished a credible 8th position with 18 points. The Madison is a 200 lap race with two riders on a team, each taking turns to race, slinging each other into action. Every ten laps there is a sprint lap where points are awarded for the first four over the line.

 

Downey and Ryan started strong, placing in the top five early on and holding position by gaining crucial points on sprint laps throughout. With 45 laps to go it was looking good for Team Ireland, with the Irish duo sitting in podium position. An aggressive finish from the remainder of the field however pushed them back to 8th place at the end of the 50km race.

“That was a really positive start to the race. Something we always lacked is coming into the race super early. And we made the plan for the first ninety laps, we really wanted to take (the race) by the scruff of the neck, and we did that,” Downey commented after the race.

 

“It was a hard race, really long, 200 laps, 50k, I really felt it. But we were sitting in the top four or five for most of the race. That was my first time with Mark for over two years, and first time doing a race that length for three years, so I’m really happy with it,” Ryan commented after finishing the the longest race on the track programme.

The Wicklow rider knew they were sitting in podium position but kept his cool, “We knew where we were sitting but we didn’t want to get too anxious because you’d use too much of yourself.”

 

Tomorrow will be another big day for the Irish team, with the medal colour being decided for Kellie Harrington and Kurt Walker who compete in boxing finals, in addition to more track cycling on the schedule.

 

CYCLING RESULTS

 

Women’s Omnium: Shannon McCurley 8th overall after 4 races.

Gold Kirsten Wild (NED)

Silver Evgeniia Augustinas (RUS)

Bronze Elisa Balsamo (ITA)

 

Men’s Madison: Mark Downey and Fintan Ryan

Gold Switzerland

Silver Netherlands

Bronze Austria

 

 

DAY TEN SCHEDULE (IRISH TIME):

07:25 Cycling Track – TBC Men’s Omnium

10:00 Badminton – Mixed Doubles - Medal Ceremony (Chloe and Sam Magee)

10:15 Boxing – Kellie Harrington Vs Mira Potkonen (FIN) Women’s Light -60kg

11:05 Boxing – Regan Buckley - Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Light Fly -49kg

11:30 Boxing – Kurt Walker Vs Mykola Butsenko (UKR) Men’s Bantam -56kg

12:20 Boxing – Michael Nevin - Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Middle -75kg

12:28 Cycling Track – Lydia Boylan & Lydia Gurley (IRL) Women’s Madison

 

This evening saw four boxers and two track cyclists in action at the European Games in Minsk, on an evening when boxers Kellie Harrington and Kurt Walker upgraded their bronze medals and booked their place in their respective finals on Sunday.

 

Kellie Harrington has teed up a mouth-watering final showdown in Minsk this weekend with a well-known foe of Irish boxing, Mira Potkonen of Finland, following a superb semi-final unanimous decision win over Agnes Alexiusson of Sweden this evening.

 

Potkonen, remembered by most Irish fans for beating Katie Taylor at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, is set to be a fierce opponent for Harrington on Sunday and will undoubtedly be one of the bouts of the weekend for fans.

 

Today’s opening round battle was a masterclass from Harrington as she dominated the bout from the off, landing some key blows and pushing Alexiusson onto the back foot early on.

 

Harrington’s momentum carried into the second round, as she continued to box strong and keep firm control of proceedings. A fight back from the Swede in the third was not enough, as Harrington took home the unanimous decision win in the end to advance to the final and the battle for gold.

“I’m feeling great!” she said afterwards. “I’m in the final! The best thing about it is we’re a wolf pack, I’m not a lone wolf, we’re a wolf pack, we are all here as a team, we’re all medalling and it’s fantastic. Irish boxing is well and truly alive.

 

“I haven’t had a fight since February so to come out here now and be in a European final that’s just – this is what dreams are made of. I have, I think, nearly every medal now. This is just fantastic for a girl out of Dublin 1.”

 

Kurt Walker is also through to the final, following a stand out performance against Peter McGrail of Great Britain this evening in the men’s bantamweight semi-final, winning out on a 3-2 split decision. This evening’s win was Walker’s second successive victory over the British boxer and the pair dished up another thrilling and close encounter, with Walker challenged at every turn.

 

“Again, it was so tough, he’s so good tactically,” Walker said afterwards. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the coaches telling me my game plan honestly. I wasn’t doing some things right which I should have been doing but I got the decision and I’m delighted.

 

“It’s unbelievable. Four years ago, I was put out in the first fight and now I’m in the final – hard work, it really does help.”

 

There was disappointment for both Regan Buckley and Michael Nevin in their respective bouts this evening, with Buckley shaded by a 3-2 split decision to lose out to Artur Hovhannisyan of Armenia, while there was heartbreak for Michael Nevin as he was knocked out in the opening round by Italian Salvatore Cavallaro. Both Buckley and Nevin will take home bronze medals to Ireland this weekend.

 

Buckley fought hard early on, winning the first round well before Hovhannisyan responded in kind in the second. A tough fought third round followed, but Hovhannisyan again looked to have the edge, and the judges deemed him the winner by a 3-2 split decision.

 

“Yeh it was a real battle, it was a very good fight,” Buckley said afterwards. “I think the first round I boxed very well, I was kind of controlling the distance very well with the jab and caught him with some lovely shots. The second round, I thought I’d done enough to get it and the third round, I just got into his fight a little bit too much, kind of standing toe-to-toe with a smaller guy, it wasn’t really working out - my punches were going over his head.

 

“But look, we’ll go back to the drawing board and we’ll go from there. This is my first major international so it’s great experience for me, win, lose or draw. I’m very happy with the bronze medal, I trained very hard for this competition and it would have been nice to come home with the win, but I was switching off small bits in the ring and that’s what I need to work on in future.”

 

In track cycling Orla Walsh and Marc Potts were in action. Walsh finished 10th in the Women’s Scratch Race, and Potts was 11th in the Men’s Points Race, where he finished on 8th points. Potts attacked several times looking to gain a lap, but nothing stuck. Tomorrow on the velodrome Robyn Stewart will compete in the Women’s Sprint, and Shannon McCurley will race in the Women’s Omnium. The Men’s Madison will feature a new combination of Mark Downey and Fintan Ryan.

 

DAY EIGHT EVENING RESULTS

BOXING RESULTS (EVENING SESSION)

 

Women’s Lightweight 60kg

Kellie Harrington (IRL) wins v Agnes Alexiusson (SWE) on unanimous decision: 29-28, 29-28, 29-28, 29-28, 30-27.

Men’s Light Flyweight 49kg

Regan Buckley (IRL) loses v Artur Hovhannisyan (ARM) on 3-2 split: 28-29, 27-30, 28-29, 29-28, 29-28

Men’s Bantamweight 56kg

Kurt Walker (IRL) wins v Peter McGrail (GBR) on 3-2 split: 30-27, 28-29, 28-29, 29-28, 28-29.

Men’s Middleweight 75kg

Michael Nevin (IRL) loses on knockout v Salvatore Cavallaro (ITA)

 

CYCLING RESULTS

 

Women’s Scratch Race: Orla Walsh 11th

Gold Kirsten Wild (NED)

Silver Martina Fidanza (ITA)

Bronze Hanna Tserakh (BLR)

Men’s Points Race: Marc Potts 10th on 8 Points.

Gold Christos Volikakis (GRE)

Silver Jan Willem Van Schip (NED)

Bronze Dmitri Mukhomediarov (RUS)

 

 

DAY NINE SCHEDULE (IRISH TIME):

08:00 Badminton – Chloe Magee & Sam Magee (IRL) Vs Gabrielle Adcock & Chris Adcock (GB) Mixed Doubles Semi Finals

08:00 Cycling Track – Robyn Stewart (IRL) Women’s Sprint Qualifying

10:20 Cycling Track – Shannon McCurley (IRL) Women’s Omnium Scratch Race I

10:35 Cycling Track – Robyn Stewart (IRL) Women’s Sprint 1/32 Rounds

12:35 Cycling Track – Shannon McCurley (IRL) Women’s Omnium Tempo Race II

15:00 Cycling Track – Robyn Stewart (IRL) Women’s Sprint 1/16 Rounds

16:00 Boxing – Michaela Walsh (IRL) Vs Stanimira Petrova (BUL) Women’s Feather -57kg

16:15 Boxing - Grainne Walsh (IRL) Medal Ceremony (after) Women’s Welter -69kg

16:23 Cycling Track – Shannon McCurley (IRL) Women’s Omnium Elimination Race III

18:01 Cycling Track – Shannon McCurley (IRL) Women’s Omnium Points Race IV

18:57 Cycling Track – Mark Downey & Fintan Ryan (IRL) Men’s Madison

 

SUNDAY

07:25 Cycling Track – TBC Men’s Omnium

10:00 Badminton – Mixed Doubles Finals

10:15 Boxing – Kellie Harrington Vs Mira Potkonen (FIN) Women’s Light -60kg

11:05 Boxing – Regan Buckley Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Light Fly -49kg

11:30 Boxing – Kurt Walker Vs Mykola Butsenko (UKR) Men’s Bantam -56kg

12:20 Boxing – Michael Nevin Medal Ceremony (after) Men’s Middle -75kg

12:28 Cycling Track – Lydia Boylan & Lydia Gurley (IRL) Women’s Madison

17:00 Boxing Kellie Harrington (IRL) v Agnes Alexiusson (SWE), Women’s Lightweight 60kg

 

 

Friday got off to a great start for Team Ireland when boxer Michaela Walsh booked her place in the final of the Women’s Featherweight -57kg beating Russian boxer Daria Abramova in the semi-finals guaranteeing her silver. This was not long after badminton secured a guaranteed medal with a 2-1 win by Chloe and Sam Magee in the Mixed Doubles.

 

Grainne Walsh wins the bronze medal in the Women’s Welterweight -69kg. She was denied the opportunity to upgrade her medal colour on a 3-2 split decision by her Polish opponent.

 

In the velodrome the track cyclists were also in action with Robyn Stewart finishing second in the repechage of the Women’s Keirin today, coming close to passing GB’s Katy Marchant for the one place on offer in the semi-final. The Women’s Team Pursuit clocked a time of 4.30.118, over a second faster than their qualifying ride to finish 5th overall in a new team combination.

 

This evenings schedule will see boxers Kellie Harrington, Regan Buckley, Kurt Walker and Michael Nevin looking to upgrade their bronze medals in the semi-finals. In the velodrome Orla Walsh and Marc Potts will be competing in their respective Scratch Race and Points Race.

 

FULL ROUND UP BY SPORT

 

BADMINTON

 

Chloe and Sam Magee have secured a semi-final spot and at least a bronze medal in the Mixed Doubles at the Falcon Club in Minsk this morning, Ireland’s seventh medal of the European Games so far.

 

The dynamic duo, who won Bronze at the 2015 European Games, outclassed the Netherlands pair of Robin Tabeling and Selena Piek over two sets, 19-21 and 17-21, to progress to the semi-final where they will face Great Britain’s Gabrielle and Chris Adcock for a place in the final.


The Magees started strong and kept their composure throughout both sets of today’s match, with Tabeling and Piek leading on only one occasion. There were joyous scenes as the Nederlands went wide to give Ireland their final point and the win.

 

Reacting Chloe commented “Amazing, we really wanted that this week but we’ve had such a tough draw and now to be standing here knowing that we are going home with a medal is the most incredible feeling that you can imagine.

 

On a second European Games medal she said “We’ve battled through so many tough games, but I think right now it feels incredible. I think the first one we won, will always stand to us, but this one feels amazing.”

 

On tomorrow’s match against European number one’s and gold medal favourites Sam commented “I think it’s an exciting match, we’ve played them a few times, the best results we’ve had was taking one set off them, so we have to take that into consideration.

 

“Tomorrow we’ve no pressure, they’ve the pressure, they’re top seeds, they’re world class players, they’re expected to win, so we have to use the other side of the coin when we’re coming in, free, no pressure and try and deliver the same quality of performance as we did today.”

 

 

BOXING

 

Michaela Walsh moved one step closer to a gold medal at the European Games in Minsk this afternoon as she won out on a 3-2 split decision in her semi-final clash against Russia’s Daria Abramova.

 

Today’s bout was certainly a case of revenge is sweet for Walsh though, having lost out to the Russian last year on a 3-2 split decision in the semi-finals of the European Championships. Indeed, much like last June’s bout, another extremely close battle followed, with Walsh firing strong in the opening round to take the upper hand early on.

 

Abramova came back hard in the second round though, and delivered some powerful blows to test Walsh at every turn. The third round was just as close, and despite a late rally from Abramova, a tactically strong Walsh held her composure to win out 3-2.

“I feel amazing, it’s great to get the win,” Walsh said afterwards. “I boxed that girl last year in the European semi final and it was a close fight so it was great to get one back. Going in, I had the perfect game plan and I tried my best to stick with it. Obviously when you’re fighting opposition so high, it can go either way, but I feel I performed really well.

 

“As Grainne said the other day, this is what dreams are made of. I’m one fight away from gold now. So I just have to refocus…. The job’s not done.”

 

Speaking of Grainne Walsh, the Tullamore based boxer was in also in semi-final this afternoon but came out the wrong side of a 3-2 split decision result in her bout against Poland’s Karolina Koszewska.

 

A super opening round from Walsh saw her slip inside the long reaching stretch of the much taller Polish boxer, getting some solid body hits and moving out of Koszewska’s range. Koszewska settled more in the second round though, and her length and size, coupled with a strong backhand, caused Walsh periods of trouble to tee up a cagey finish.

 

A closely fought third round saw Walsh take back some of the control, and dictated the match for solid spells. It wasn’t enough though as Koszewska was crowned winner on a 3-2 split decision in the end. Walsh bows out of the Games with a bronze medal for Team Ireland.

“A tough fight, but they’ve all been tough fights to be honest with you,” Grainne said afterwards. “I just fell short, I found her range awkward, but I did what I could and I felt it could have went either way. I’m glad I’m on the podium and I’ll dust myself off – it’s a learning curve, it’s never a loss, it’s a learning.”

 

CYCLING

 

The Women’s Team Pursuit knocked one second off their qualifying time to finish fifth with 4.30.118 in the 4km test against the clock. The event is a contest whereby four riders compete as a team in a race against the clock, rotating the person at the front throughout.

 

Yesterday in qualifying the quartet of Orla Walsh, Mia Griffin, Lydia Gurley and Shannon McCurley were competing for the first time together, and today were happy to go one second quicker in the second fastest time clocked by an Irish Team Pursuit. They started hard and by the halfway mark were already 2 seconds faster than their qualifying time, catching the Ukrainian team who started on the opposite side of the track.

Griffin was pleased with their performance after the round, “We went into the qualifying thinking we had 3-4 seconds on Ukraine in the qualifying, and we thought maybe we would get in their slip stream, get a second or two on what we did yesterday, and we went a second faster.”

 

In the Women’s Keirin Robyn Stewart finished second in her repechage, after missing out on a direct route to the semi-final in the opening heat, the winner Katy Marchant from GB took the one place on offer, with Stewart pushing hard in the final 100m.

The Keirin is a sprint event where a derny, or motor pacer, sets the pace for the riders who line behind before the derny peels off and leaves the riders to sprint the remaining laps.

 

This evening will see more action in the velodrome with Orla Walsh competing in the Women’s Scratch Race and Marc Potts taking on the Men’s Points Race.

 

DAY EIGHT RESULTS

Boxing

Women’s Featherweight 57kg

Michaela Walsh (IRL) wins over Daria Abramova (RUS) on 3:2 split decision – 29-28, 28-29, 28-29, 29-28, 29-28

 

Women’s Welterweight 69kg

Grainne Walsh (IRL) loses to Karolina Koszewska (POL) on a 3-2 split decision – 29-28, 27-30, 29-28, 27-30, 30-27

 

 

Badminton

Robin Tabeling & Selena Piek (Netherlands) v Chloe Magee & Sam Magee (Ireland) W 19-21, 17-21

 

Cycling Track

 

Women’s Keirin Heats: Robyn Stewart 4th, moves to Repechages.

 

Women’s Team Pursuit: Orla Walsh, Mia Griffin, Lydia Gurley, Shannon McCurley finish 5th 4.30.118.

 

 

DAY EIGHT EVENING SCHEDULE

 

17:00 Boxing Kellie Harrington (IRL) v Agnes Alexiusson (SWE), Women’s Lightweight 60kg

 

18:00 Cycling Orla Walsh Women’s Scratch Race

 

18:15 Boxing Regan Buckley (IRL) v Artur Hovhannisyan (ARM), Men’s Light Flyweight 49kg

 

18:30 Boxing Peter McGrail (GBR) v Kurt Walker (IRL), Men’s Bantamweight 56kg

 

18:35 Cycling March Potts Men’s Points Race

 

19:45 Boxing Salvatore Cavallaro (ITA) v Michael Nevin (IRL), Men’s Middleweight 75kg

 

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