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Irish Amateur Boxing Association

Irish team captain Darren O’Neill lost out in his bid to reach the quarter-finals of the Olympic Games in London today.

The Kilkenny southpaw was beaten 19-12 by Germany middleweight Stefan Hartel at the ExCel this afternoon.

As expected, neither had to go looking for each in this afternoon’s last-16 clash, Hartel finding the target with two solid body shots in the opening three minute to move 4-2 ahead by the bell for the end of the round.

The German soaked up some punishment from the Irish Elite champion in the opening exchanges of the second.

However, as the frame progressed he resumed picking up points with his backhand, and, continuing to work the body with lefts, held a six-point (14-8) advantage going into the third.

O’Neill went for broke in the final stanza and reduced the deficit by at least two points after pinning Hartel in a corner in the opening 30 seconds.

But the German weathered the storm en route to a deserved, if slightly generous, margin of victory.

He’ll now meet Great Britain’s Anthony Ogogo, an opponent O’Neill has beaten in the past, in the quarter-finals.

Ogogo advanced after shocking current AIBA World champion, Ievgen Khytrov of the Ukraine, on a double countback following an 18-18 tie this afternoon.

“All credit to him, I have to got back to the drawing board from here, said O’Neill.

“He’s a very good defence. He soaks up everything you throw at him and he comes back very quickly with a right hand.

“I’m very disappointed, but I’m proud of myself as well. I gave it all I could and I’m going to walk out of here with my head held high.”

Meanwhile, Indian lightweight Jai Bhagwan also bowed out today following a 16-8 reversal to Gani Zhailavov of Kazakhstan.

Bhagwan qualified for the Olympics after a 30-32 win over Ireland’s David Oliver Joyce at the 2011 AIBA World Championships and Olympic qualifiers.

Joyce was handed a harsh public warning in the final five seconds of that clash. a decision that effectively handed Bhagwan a ticket to London 2012.

Michael Conlan and Adam Nolan will both be in action on Friday evening in the last-16, followed by Paddy Barnes on Saturday.

2012 Olympic Games

July 28th – Last 32

56kg – Bantamweight – John Joe Nevin (Ireland) beat Dennis Villy Ceylan (Denmark) 21-6

75kg – Middleweight – Darren O’Neill (Ireland) beat Muideen Olalekan Akanji (Nigeria) 15-6

July 29th – Last 32

69kg – Welterweight – Adam Nolan (Ireland) beat Carlos Sanchez Estacio (Ecuador) 14-8

August 1st – Last 16

56kg – Bantamweight – John Joe Nevin (Ireland) beat Kanat Abutalipov (Kazakhstan) 15-10

August 2nd – Last 16 (1.30pm session)

75kg – Middleweight – Darren O’Neill (Ireland) lost to Stefan Hartel (Germany) 12-19

August 3rd – Last 16 (8.30pm session)

52kg – Flyweight – Michael Conlan (Ireland) v Duke Akeuth Micah (Ghana)

69kg – Welterweight – Adam Nolan (Ireland) v Andrey Zamkovoy (Russia)

August 4th – Last 16 (1.30pm session)

49kg – Light-flyweight – Paddy Barnes (Ireland) v Thomas Essomba (Cameroon)

August 5th – Quarter- final (8.30pm session)

56kg – Bantamweight – John Joe Nevin (Ireland) v Oscar Fierro Valdez (Mexico)

August 6th – Quarter-final (1.30pm session)

60kg – Lightweight – Katie Taylor (Ireland) v Queen Underwood (USA) or Natasha Jonas (Great Britain)

Irish 2012 Olympic squad

49Kg (Light-flyweight) Paddy Barnes (Holy Family BC, Belfast)

52kg (Flyweight) Michael Conlan (St John Bosco BC, Belfast)

56kg (Bantamweight) John Joe Nevin (Cavan BC)

60kg (Lghtweight) Katie Taylor (Bray BC, Wicklow)

69kg (Welterweight) Adam Nolan (Bray BC, Wicklow)

75kg (Middleweight) Darren O’Neill (Paulstown BC, Kilkenny)

Team Manager: Des Donnelly

Coaches: Billy Walsh, Zuar Antia, Pete Taylor

Physio: Conor McCarthy

Strength & Conditioning: John Cleary

Performance Psychologist: Gerry Hussey

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