Kellie Harrington will come home from Tokyo with at least a bronze medal after securing her place in the women’s Olympic lightweight semi-finals.
Dublin native Harrington proved to be too strong for her Algerian opponent Imane Khelif in their quarter-final bout, and was awarded a unanimous decision victory by the judges.
Harrington has become Ireland’s second boxer, after Aidan Walsh, to secure a medal at this year’s Olympics, an accomplishment which she told RTE she was “overwhelmed” to achieve.
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‘I’m overwhelmed with emotions.’
“You know, I’m overwhelmed with emotions at the moment. Sometimes you think of getting here, and never think of getting medals or anything,” Harrington said.
“Sometimes I think I’m lucky. You can’t be that lucky to be winning all these things and then end up here and have a bronze medal in my bag from the Olympic Games.
“Everything that I’ve achieved, I owe it to Noel Burke, my club coach at home and I owe it to these men [coaches in Tokyo] and the rest of the Irish high performance team.
“I owe it to my teammates as well for all the sparring and the preparation, all the support we give each other.”
Semi-final bout up next for Kellie Harrington.
Harrington will now face Sudaporn Seesondee of Thailand in her semi-final, having claimed unanimous victories in her first two Olympic bouts.
The 31-year-old was the number one seed heading into the Olympics, and she has so far lived up to her billing after seeing off Italy’s Rebecca Nicoli and Khelif in comfortable fashion.
Harrington will look to emulate Katie Taylor‘s triumph in 2012, to become the second Irishwoman to claim the Olympic gold medal in the lightweight division.