GB Boxing performance director Rob McCracken may have seen just one gold-medal chance out of five taken on the final day in Bulgaria, but he insisted his side’s European Championships had been a huge success.
Lightweight Joe Cordina was the star as he beat Otar Eranosyan of Georgia to become European champion, on a day of mixed fortunes for the GB boxing team.
Four of Cordina’s teammates were also in finals but they had to settle for silver medals, with an additional bronze securing a best-ever performance by a team of boxers from the three home nations (England, Scotland and Wales) in the 90 year history of the European Championships.
And while it was a case of so near for a number of his squad, McCracken was more than impressed with the medal haul.
“To bring seven boxers to a tournament as difficult as the European Championship and leave with six medals, with five boxers making the final, is a fantastic achievement,” said McCracken.
“All of the boxers have acquitted themselves very well throughout this week, and after some superb performances today, I think the team can consider itself very unlucky to only win one gold.
“This is a very talented, yet still relatively inexperienced group of boxers, so to perform so well at a tournament of this stature and now have eight boxers going to the World Championships in October, which is an Olympic qualifier, is a great achievement and augurs very well for the future.”
Cordina’s classy triumph over the brawling style of Eranosyan was the highpoint of the day as the man from Cardiff showed superior skills and clever footwork to outwit the Georgian and secure a unanimous victory.
It was to prove the sole victory for the Great Britain team, as Harvey Horn, Muhammad Ali, Qais Ashfaq and Pat McCormack had to settle for silver, with Joshua Buatsi adding a bronze medal.
All six boxers have earnt a place at the World Championships in Doha in October 2015, which is an Olympic qualification event.
They will be joined by welterweight Josh Kelly and super-heavyweight Joe Joyce who secured their places following their success at the European Games in June of this year when Kelly won bronze and Joyce took gold.
© Sportsbeat 2015