Team Ireland topped the team rankings and the medal table ahead of Ukraine and Bulgaria at the EUBC European Women’s Elite Boxing Championships in Budva, Montenegro. Their top star, the Olympic Champion and World Champion Kellie Harrington earned her first European gold medal and summarized her experiences in Budva in a special interview.
Ireland’s team captain, the 33-year-old Kellie Harrington has more than 12 years of international experiences. She achieved a fantastic gold medal at the 2018 Women’s World Boxing Championships and she won all of the most important competitions in the recent four years.
The Irish star was injured by the time of the 2019 EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships and the 2022 IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships but recovered quickly. Harrington defeated all of her rivals in Budva including Czech Republic’s 21-year-old Lenka Bernardova in the final of the lightweight (60kg) unanimously and she bagged her first European title.
“It feels great to become a European Champion, but what really makes me feel good is that the Irish Women’s Team is growing from strength to strength and people are starting to understand the hard work we put in. We are not just here to take part, we are here to do our best and bring out the best version of ourselves each time we are in competitions.
I am glad to be part of a team of 10 brilliant women each of whom fought gallantly with their heart and head and to be coming away from such a great tournament as best team in Budva. This is a credit to Irish boxing, to our High Performance Team, but also, and more importantly our local boxing clubs. I would like to underline that without them we would not be here, they are the ones who give up hours of volunteering after working full days especially my own coach Mr. Noel Burke from St. Mary’s in Dublin.
All of the girls in my weight class were ready to this European Championships, it was a very strong category in Budva. I respect each of them and each of my opponents, we all drive each other on and make each other want to get better or to come back stronger. It was a really nice way to finish the year,” said Ireland’s champion, Kellie Harrington after the entire competition.