Aidan Walsh injures ankle while celebrating.
Aidan Walsh has injured his ankle, apparently while celebrating his Olympic welterweight quarter-final victory today.
The Belfast boxer put in an assured performance as he guaranteed a medal by defeating Merven Clair of Mauritius via split-decision. Four of the five judges in Tokyo called the fight in Walsh’s favour leading to joyous scenes when the decision was announced.
Aidan Walsh “has slight strain of ankle.”
However, Team Ireland has confirmed that Walsh suffered a “slight strain” of his ankle but is “looking forward” to facing Britain’s Pat McCormack in Sunday’s semi-final.
Walsh was seen to jump up for joy as the result was announced but appeared to wince as he came back down to the canvas.
Olympic Federation of Ireland CEO Peter Sherrard told RTE:
“He’s fine, just a little bit of a scare. They’ve had a good look at it and feel that he’ll be ready and fighting fit so that’s the important thing and great news ahead of that big fight.”
Aidan Walsh: “I’m improving all the time.”
Overall, Walsh was pleased with his performance and will go into Sunday’s bout feeling confident that he can win.
“I just do what the coaches tell me,” he said afterwards. “They come up with a game plan and you just do it, just listen. Boxers say it’s like a computer game, they’re playing a computer game, I’m just the operator in it and doing my best to do what they’re telling me to do.
“I’m happy with my performance but I want to progress on. You want to be the best and I feel like I’m improving all the time.”
It was a great day all-round for Irish boxing in Tokyo as Kellie Harrington cruised into the quarter-finals after winning her opening bout of the tournament against Italy’s Rebecca Nicoli.
The Dubliner will now prepare to face Imane Khelif of Algeria on Tuesday for the prize of securing at least a bronze medal.
Walsh against McCormack will take place at 4.03 am Irish time on Sunday.