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Oceanian Elite Boxing Championships

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Australia won thirteen out of the sixteen weight classes at the Oceanian Elite Championships, which were held in the capital city, Canberra, with an AIBA Workshop held prior the competition.

Altogether 59 female and male boxers from nine nations competed at the Confederation's championships: host Australia, Fiji Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Samoa Islands, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu. The Oceanian Elite Championships were held in the new weight classes for both women and men.

Papua New-Guinea has been suspended by AIBA and therefore the country was unable to compete at the championships.

 

Australia and neighbour New Zealand fought for the gold medals in the women's championships. The local boxers secured five first places while the developing Kiwi athletes achieved two gold medals in Canberra.

Turkish Prime Ministry Tournament winner Claire Ghabrial of Australia is a medal contender in the forthcoming 6th AIBA Women's World Championships and as expected she won the Olympic light welterweight class in Canberra after beating Eske Dost of New Zealand.

Kelly Woolrich is an experienced Kiwi female boxer and she made an impressive performance at the championships, comprehensively beating a qualified Jessica Bouquet of Australia by 15:2 in the 64kg weight class final.

Australia's favourite male athletes, 19-year-old twin brothers Andrew and Jason Moloney, outpointed their opponents from Nauru in the 49kg and 52kg weight classes. Jason defeated Singapore Youth Olympian D.J. Maaki in the final and celebrated his first continental title.

AIBA Road to Milan graduate 18-year-old Lalomauga Sinapapa Sanele of Samoa lost his first contest against eventual winner Luke Jackson of Australia in the lightweight. But the Commonwealth Games bronze medalist had a harder fight in the final against Angus Donaldson of New Zealand but nevertheless eased out to a 3:0 victory.

Luke Woods, the 18-year-old Australian boxer, and National Champion Anthony Taylor of New Zealand put on one of the most thrilling contests at the championships. The final score was 3:3 but Tasmanian Woods won the contest by accepted scores.

Former Oceanian Champion and veteran Kiwi boxer Kahukura Bentson was defeated by New South Wales based Cameron Hammond of Australia in the semifinal. The young local competitor won the final bout easily against his Tongan opponent.

 

AIBA Youth World Championships silver medalist Damien Hooper took the gold medal in Canberra after beating Hugo Fata of Samoa in a close contest by 3:1. The 18-year-old 

supertalented boxer will be competing at the 1st Youth Olympic Games in Singapore next week.

In the light heavyweight division, the strong local boxer Dave Mulivai of Queensland took the gold medal, while 23-year-old John Squillace continued Australia's great series in the heavyweight class.

Junior Fa of Tonga was the only non-Australian competitor among the men boxers to win his weight class. Tonga's best boxers have always been in the super heavyweight class and their new rising star is Junior Fa. He defeated 29-year-old Russian-born Aleksey Mukhin of Australia with a large margin of 8:1 in the final.

Source & photo : The AIBA