Host nation Turkey has the most finalists – five – at the Women’s World Boxing Championships that concludes on Friday. The other countries to make the finals are Algeria, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chinese Taipei, India, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Morocco, Mozambique, Panama, Poland, Romania, Thailand and the USA.
Turkey’s Sennur Demir has earlier won silver and bronze medals at the Women’s World Boxing Championships. The veteran boxer returned to the heavyweight (+81kg) before this event and used her height advantage to stop Poland’s Lidia Fidura in the semi-final. She will meet Morocco’s Khadija Mardi, who moved up to this category this year and stopped Uzbekistan’s Mokhira Abdullayeva.
Irish boxers Amy Broadhurst and Lisa O’Rourke won their respective semi-finals to progress to the finals. Now guaranteed silver medals at least, Broadhurst secured a hard-fought victory over India’s Parveen to progress to the final of the light welterweight (60-63kg) division, while O’Rourke moved into the light middleweight decider, defeating Turkey’s Sema Caliskan.
Colombia’s Ingrit Valencia has won medals in all of the major championships during her long career, but she is a finalist at the Women’s World Boxing Championships for the first time. The Colombian veteran is the No.1 on the American continent, and will meet Turkey’s Busenaz Cakiroglu who had a wonderful semi-final against Spain’s prospect Laura Fuertes.
“It was an excellent semi-final in a fantastic arena and I enjoyed each second in the ring today. I will do my best in the final,” said Valencia.
Romania’s Lacramioara Perijoc is the EUBC European Champion in the bantamweight (54kg). She defeated a former champion, Dina Zholaman of Kazakhstan, in the semi-final and will meetTurkey’s EUBC European U22 Champion Hatice Akbas in the final. The 21-year-old Turkish boxer was too quick for Thailand’s Preedakamon Tintabthai in the second semi-final of the weight class.
Brazil’s defending world champion Beatriz Ferreira is the favourite in the lightweight (60kg) following her victory over Italy’s Alessia Mesiano who won gold at the 2016 Women’s World Boxing Championships. Ferreira remains unbeaten this year as she goes into the final against United States’ Rashida Ellis..
“I am satisfied with my today’s performance and I believe I worked hard in all of the rounds. The second was the best one but the most important was the victory for today as I know my final will be very difficult. I met with my final opponent from USA several times, last time in the final of the AMBC American Boxing Championships and I know she is strong and fast,” added Ferreira.
Canada has produced several champion women boxers in the past two decades, with 26 medals at the World Championships. Their new stars Charlie Cavanagh and Tamara Thibeault will add further medals, with Cavanagh reaching the finals to meet Turkey’s star Busenaz Surmeneli for the gold in welterweight (66kg).
Canada’s second finalist, the AMBC American Champion Tamara Thibeault achieved a bronze medal at the last edition of the Championships in Ulan-Ude. The Canadian middleweight (75kg) boxer was 15cm taller than her semi-final opponent, Mozambique’s Rady Adosinda Gramane and she had the speed to win the contest.
Thibeault will now meet Panama’s 2014 World Champion Atheyna Bylon, who eliminated France’s Davina Michel in the semi-final. The final between Thibeault and Bylon will be a repeat of their final at the AMBC American Boxing Championships that was won by Thibeault.
“It was a fantastic fight today and I felt from the start that I am better and I can win this semi-final. I know my final opponent well and I am planning to beat her this time,” commented Bylon.