With his welterweight victory at Tokyo 2020, Aidan Walsh ensures himself at least a bronze medal.
Although it was later revealed that Aidan Walsh had sustained a “slight strain” to his ankle, his confident performance in the welterweight quarter-finals ensured Ireland of at least one more medal at the Olympic Games.
A. Walsh Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
Consistently catching Merven Clair of Mauritius on the counter and landing some punishing straight right punches, the 24-year-old remained calm and collected throughout the fight.
Walsh led on three of the five judges’ cards after the first round, allowing him to sit back and pick off his opponent in rounds two and three, despite Clair’s southpaw advantage and looser approach.
With three judges scoring the bout 30-27 for Walsh and one for Clair at 29-28, the Irishman was awarded a 4-1 split decision victory and guaranteed at least a bronze medal.
On Sunday at 4:03 a.m. (Irish time), Walsh will compete against Pat McCormack of Great Britain for a spot in the final and a guaranteed silver medal.
A “slight strain” was sustained during the bout, but “they’re looking forward to the fight on Sunday,” as Team Ireland reported.
It appears that Walsh was injured while celebrating his victory in the ring, yet he was able to do his postmatch media obligations.
He’s fine, just a little bit of a scare,” OFI CEO Peter Sherrard said on RTÉ’s News at One.
“They’ve looked at it and feel that he’ll be ready and fighting fit, so that’s the key thing and excellent news ahead of that huge fight,” he said.
The 24-year-reaction old’s to being the latest boxer from Belfast to earn an Olympic medal for Ireland was simply, “It’s wonderful.”
Those guys were always the focus of my attention in the gym. I remember Paddy Barnes and Mick Conlan riding the large buses back to Belfast.
I’m extremely thankful to my coaches, my club coaches, my family, and my fiancée for all the encouragement they’ve given me over all the hours of training and the countless other sacrifices I’ve made.
Whenever one of my coaches tells me to do something, I just go along with it. To put it simply, they devise a strategy and you comply, listening attentively. The boxers compare the experience to playing a video game; I see my role as just that of an operator trying to carry out the instructions given to me.
I’m pleased with how things have gone so far, but I hope to improve. You strive to excel, and I believe that I am continually getting better.
Walsh said, “He faces Ireland’s Aidan Walsh, that’s the way I’m looking at it” when told he would be facing British opponent McCormack, who had previously defeated him three times.
With the appropriate strategy and mentors, winning is as simple as showing up and believing it. With each bout, I improve my skills.
Walsh also paid respect to his older sister and fellow Tokyo competitor Michaela, whom he called “my greatest friend,” and who was present at the Kokugikan Arena to cheer him on.
“When I was a kid, everyone used to be terrified of my giant sister, even though she wasn’t as large as my real brother.
I know that if I did Anything for her, She would do the same for me, and vice Versa.
She’s the reason I’m still boxing and not giving up the sport. She sensed my potential when I was a teenage street performer and advised me to “twist your neck in.”