Taylor turns attention to Olympics after Gold in Barbados

by Alan O’Meara

Katie Taylor has immediately set her sights on the 2012 Olympic glory following her triumph at the AIBA World Boxing Championships in Barbados.

Ireland’s greatest ever female boxer secured gold at the recent event with an 18-5 victory over China’s Cheng Dong in the 60kg final and she has quickly shifted her attentions towards the London Olympics.

The comfortable victory was Taylor’s third consecutive title following successes in 2006 and 2008.

Such was the calibre of the Bray boxer’s performance she also picked up, for the second successive time, the “Boxer of the Tournamen” award, which was voted on by participants.

After her outstanding victory Taylor couldn’t help but look forward to showcasing her talents at the highest possible level.

“The Olympics has always been my main goal ever since I started boxing so the next few years are going to be a very exciting few years for me.”

“Obviously there’s going to be a bit of pressure coming up to it, but there’s pressure in every fight and every competition I go into, so I just have to keep training hard and hopefully things will go OK for me,” she told RTÉ.

Four years ago the country barely noticed a young Taylor register her first of three World Championship medals. However, now she has slowly become Ireland’s main hope for gold in 2012 due to the fact that women boxing will be part of the Olympic schedule for the first time ever in London.

Her third medal was a fairly straightforward contest although the first round of the title bout was a particularly close one with the Irish fighter edging her opponent 4-2.

Despite having come through four previous rounds just to reach the final, Taylor showed no signs of fatigue and stretched her lead to 10-2 in the second round after some neat boxing.

The Bray fighter always looked in control in the ring and she oozed class as she pulled 13-3 clear after landing a massive left hook which nearly knocked out Dong.

Taylor was simply just a notch above the rest on the day and when the final bell sounded to ensure her 18-5 victory she dropped to her knees in sheer delight to a chorus of ‘Olé, olé, olé’ from  a small Irish contingent in the crowd.

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