Jude Gallagher buzzing after stunning Commonwealth Games victory

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Jude Gallagher buzzing after stunning Commonwealth Games victory
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Jude Gallagher was buzzing after battering Birmingham boxer Niall Farrell in his own backyard to progress to the Commonwealth Games quarter final.

Gallagher, 20, needed just 122 seconds to have his English opponent counted out on his feet in the first round at the NEC.

Two booming right hands turned Farrell’s legs to jelly, and the fight was waved off after a second standing count in quick succession, much to the distaste of the home fighter and large pocket of supporters.

Gallagher said: “I’m buzzing about that; it couldn’t have gone any better. I just listened to the tactics. Start fast and look for that right hand over the top.

“Once I found my range over his jab, I landed it perfectly a couple of times and the referee stepped in and stopped it.

“There’s nothing I can do about the stoppage. I caught him and his legs went on the first one and I thought the referee made the right decision to give the count.

“He may not agree with it but there’s nothing we can do about it; we just have to respect the referees’ decision.”

Fuming Farrell, who lives in nearby Kingstanding, said the manner of his defeat had left him “wounded” with his Games brought to a shuddering halt.

The 24-year-old said: “I’m just gutted. Obviously, I’m in my hometown and I wanted to make everyone proud. It’s just ruined me to be honest.

“He’s a good lad, I know that, but I thought I was winning the round. I got hit with two clean shots but it’s boxing - people get hit all day. I could’ve taken 20 more of them.

“I thought it was stopped early and the ref didn’t give me a chance. It is what it is, and it’s done now, I’m just wounded. I couldn’t have done any more to say I was sound.”

This summer, Team Northern Ireland, supported by funding raised by National Lottery players, will compromise of over 100 athletes, all vying for medal success.

Gallagher will take on Pakistan’s Ilyas Hussain on Wednesday while teammate Clepson Paiva also progressed on Monday with a points victory in his first ever senior fight.

Flyweight Paiva was far less convincing than his compatriot after earning a split decision over Ghana’s Yaw Samuel Addo.

Paiva admitted fighting grown men was massively different to his junior experience and despite coming out on top on the scorecards, appeared to run out of gas in the third round.

“It was a good fight to break me in, he was a tough opponent, very strong. I had to work a little bit for it,” said Paiva, who takes on Wales’ Jake Dodd on Thursday.

“It’s a massive difference fighting full grown men, it’s a different type of strength and he’s got that experience over me. I’m only young now but I’ve done all right there.

“I was very tired, but I just had to bite down [on my mouthguard].”

It was a valiant defeat for Northern Ireland in netball, going down 71-27 to defending gold medallists England.

It is the Warriors’ third loss from three of the Games after defeats to world champions New Zealand and underrated Malawi, and skipper Caroline O’Hanlon called for more support for some of the sport’s smaller nations.

"We're proud of the effort that we put in,” said O’Hanlon.

“Netball Northern Ireland and World Netball need to look at how that next tier of teams are getting the competitive opportunity to bridge the gap to the top half of the rankings.

"They [England] are one of the favourites for the competition and reigning champions. We were delighted to be out there battling it out with them."

Next up is Uganda on Wednesday for O’Hanlon’s young charges, before they round off the group stage against Trinidad and Tobago.

And in weightlifting, Caroline Doyle came ninth in the women’s 64kg with a total of 179kg in her first Games.

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