Katie lands boxer of the year award


Bray People - - Sport -

WICK­LOW’S KATIE Tay­lor was named AIBA fe­male boxer of the year in Moscow last week.

The award com­pletes an in­cred­i­ble twelve months for the 22-yearold Bray woman who re­tained her World light­weight ti­tle at the fifth AIBA Women’s World Cham­pi­onships in Ningbo City, China last month as well as col­lect­ing the boxer of the tour­na­ment award.

Speak­ing from Moscow, Tay­lor, who is coached by her dad Peter Tay­lor, said that she was very proud to ac­cept such a pres­ti­gious hon­our.

She said: ‘I would like to thank AIBA for this very spe­cial award, it means a lot not only to me but also to all fe­male box­ers who prac­tice our beau­ti­ful sport. Women’s box­ing is amaz­ing at the mo­ment, the level is in­creas­ing and the re­cent Women’s World Cham­pi­onships were a per­fect ex­am­ple of the very high stan­dard we find our­selves com­pet­ing in.

‘This award is great recog­ni­tion of the ex­cel­lent progress women’s box­ing has made in re­cent years and I would like to ded­i­cate it to all the fe­male ath­letes around the world who are train­ing hard and com­pet­ing in the hope that we will be able to par­tic­i­pate in the 2012 Olympic Games.’

The Pres­i­dent of the Ir­ish Am­a­teur Box­ing As­so­ci­a­tion, Do­minic O’Rourke said that Tay­lor’s award was an­other proud mo­ment for the IABA who cel­e­brate their 100th birth­day in 2011.

He said: ‘Katie is a tremendous am­bas­sador for Ir­ish sport and her achieve­ment in re­tain­ing her World ti­tle in China and also be­ing named boxer of the tour­na­ment was phe­nom­e­nal.

‘The award is an­other proud mo­ment in the his­tory of the Ir­ish Am­a­teur Box­ing As­so­ci­a­tion. Katie’s achieve­ments are an in­spi­ra­tion to every­one in­volved with Ir­ish am­a­teur box­ing and a source of im­mense pride.’

Mean­while Tay­lor scooped The Ir­ish Times/Ir­ish Sports Coun­cil ‘Sportswoman of the Month Award’ for Novem­ber, hav­ing re­tained her World ti­tle in China, beat­ing lo­cal favourite Cheng Dong 13-2 in the fi­nal.

Last year, she won the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships for the third time and was named the over­all win­ner of the 2007 Sportswoman of the Year Award. In China, as in the other four ma­jor tour­na­ments, Tay­lor was named ’Boxer of the Tour­na­ment’. She awaits the de­ci­sion of the In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee on whether women’s box­ing will be in­cluded in the Lon­don 2012 Games. If so, she will have her chance to ful­fil a life­time’s am­bi­tion: to win an Olympic gold for Ire­land.

En route to the Am­a­teur In­ter­na­tional Box­ing As­so­ci­a­tion (AIBA) world fi­nal in China, Tay­lor beat Anna Car­ruthers of Aus­tralia 20-3, stopped Ce­leste Per­alta of Ar­gentina in round one and out­classed Azzy­nat Gadzhieva of Rus­sia (20-2) in the semi-fi­nal.

Her only close con­test came against Czech fighter Danusa Dil­hafova, who she beat 4-3.

How­ever, the tech­ni­cal del­e­gate said that she was ‘em­bar­rassed’ by the of­fi­ci­at­ing in that match, which Tay­lor clearly won by a wider mar­gin. The ref­eree con­cerned did not of­fi­ci­ate again in the tour­na­ment.

Tay­lor, who is also a se­nior Ir­ish foot­ball in­ter­na­tional, trav­elled to Moscow last week to col­lect her AIBA fe­male boxer of the year award. Speak­ing of the news that she has been named Sportswoman of the Month, Tay­lor, said ‘I am very grate­ful for this ac­knowl­edge­ment of my achieve­ments. It is a great hon­our.’

‘Katie is ahead of the posse at the mo­ment,’ said Ir­ish Olympic box­ing coach Billy Walsh. ‘She’s a phe­nom­e­nal tal­ent. Just a very nat­u­ral, gifted girl. A pow­er­ful girl and very ded­i­cated. Never takes any­body for granted. She has beaten a lot of th­ese girls be­fore. Ev­ery time she goes to meet them it is a fresh page. Men­tally, she is re­ally strong. An ex­cep­tional tal­ent. She trains with our se­nior male team, the team that went to the Euro­pean cham­pi­onships. She sparred with those guys and gave them as good as she got. Please God, three weights will be al­lowed into the Olympic Games so she can show she is pound-for-pound the best boxer in the world.’

Katie will bat­tle it out against pre­vi­ous month’s win­ners, for the ti­tle of Sportswoman of the Year 2008 at an awards cer­e­mony in Dublin on Jan­uary 23. The other monthly win­ners in­clude An­gela Walsh, who cap­tained Cork’s Gaelic Foot­ball team to All-Ire­land glory, Chloe Magee, a 20-year-old bad­minton cham­pion from Done­gal who went on to qual­ify for the sin­gles in Bei­jing; Nina Car­berry, an ac­com­plished jockey who had a mem­o­rable visit to Chel­tenham; Leona and Lisa Maguire, 13-year old twins from Co. Ca­van whose flare for golf brought them to the fi­nal of the Ir­ish Close; and Siob­han Byrne, the Ger­man-born 23year-old who be­came the first fe­male Ir­ish fencer to com­pete in the Olympics in al­most fifty years.

Es­tab­lished in 2004, the aim of the Sports Woman of the Year awards is to recog­nise the abil­i­ties and achieve­ments of women in Ir­ish sports.

The awards run over a twelve month pe­riod, with the judges se­lect­ing a win­ner each month for her abil­ity to ex­cel at sport. From the twelve monthly win­ners, the over­all Sportswoman of the Year is se­lected and an­nounced.

The win­ner is de­cided by a judg­ing panel, which is rep­re­sented by in­di­vid­u­als from The Ir­ish Times, RTE, and the Evening Her­ald.

Katie Tay­lor, with her dad Peter Tay­lor at the awards cer­e­mony in Moscow.

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