The Tammer Tournament lived up to its billing as one of the most highly rated competitions on the international calendar after some unforgettable bouts took place on finals day this weekend. This 33rd edition in Tampere, Finland, once again showcased some true boxing talents with the perfect blend of new faces and experienced campaigners claiming valuable silverware. Ireland topped the team ranking with four gold medals whilst England took two.
The Finnish tournament offered a women's draw at Lightweight (60kg) and it was the home boxer Mira Potkonen who prevailed after triumphing 19:11 in the final against her Italian opponent Romina Marenda. In the specially arranged third place bout, England's Chantelle Cameron come out on top after her 21:6 victory over Akbota Dulatova.
2008 Beijing Olympic Games silver medallist Kenneth Egan from Ireland proved he has lost none any of his hunger after the 30-year-old put together a string of quality performances to reach the Light Heavyweight (81kg) final where he completely outboxed local fighter Tomi Honka 16:8 to collect the gold medal. David Oliver Joyce, a confident and extremely positive fighter, was the first of the Irishmen to reach the top of the podium after he overcame the challenge of Wales' titleholder Joseph Cordina 15:11 in the Lightweight (60kg) final, also adding the boxer of the tournament award to his victory.
Welterweight (75kg) sensation John Joe Joyce, a cousin of David Oliver, quickly followed suit after defeating another Finnish boxer, Anti Hietala, 12:10 to make it a hat-trick of Irish gold medals in Tampere. The team's dominance continued after Belfast Middleweight (75kg) Conrad Cummings cruised to a resounding 22:9 victory over Henri Kekalainen, also of Finland.
Earlier there had been an upset as rising England star Jack Bateson was beaten to the Light Flyweight (46-49kg) title by Lalitha Prasad Polipalli of India who won 14:10. Frenchman Elie Konki looked in the mood after having impressed in the semi-finals, the teenager dispatching of India's Dheeraj 17:11 in the Flyweight (52kg) final to confirm his status as one of the fledgling talents of French boxing.
At Bantamweight (56kg), Commonwealth Games gold medallist Sean McGoldrick of Wales battled reigning champion England Qais Ashfaq for the top prize. With pride at stake, it was a tense affair but in the end it was the 20-year-old Welshman who prevailed with a 10:6 win.
Orthodox Sam Maxwell of England claimed his country's first gold after the native of Liverpool overpowered Ireland's Ross Hickey in the Light Welterweight (64kg) final 20:10. Maxwell has really blossomed in the last six months and he was rewarded for his efforts with the 'Fighter of the Tournament' trophy. The second English gold went to Super Heavyweight (91+kg) Joe Joyce after a polished display saw him come out on top in his battle with Ireland's Con Sheehan 20:16.
Estonia's 20-year-old Rain Karlson collected the Heavyweight (91kg) gold after Fabio Turchi of Italy was unable to take part following an injury sustained in his semi-final victory.
It was an impressive performance by the Irish squad but it was the overall quality of the event that was the most pleasing. The Tammer Tournament continues to set the standard and many more boxers will be looking to make an impression when the competition returns next year.
For breakdown of results HERE
Copyright © 2012 AIBA http://www.aiba.org