BELFAST boxer Michael Conlan has become the first Irish male to win gold at the World Amateur Championships following victory over Murodjon Akhmadaliev on Wednesday.
The 23-year-old won a unanimous points decision over his Uzbekistan opponent, but there was drama in the third and final round as Conlan suffered a knock-down late on.
However, Conlan had already done enough after winning the opening two rounds before nicking the third too, earning a 3-0 decision overall in the 56kg bamtamweight bout.
With scores of 30-27, 29-28, 29-28, Ireland team captain Conlan is the first representative of Ireland to land the title in the 41-year history of the prestigious amateur tournament.
"I am a bit embarrassed at getting knocked down in the last round," said Conlan, who has already qualified for next summer’s Olympics in Rio.
"It is the first time I have been on the canvas in my life. He hit me sweet on the chin and it was the best punch I have ever been hit with. But I recovered really quickly and I am really happy."
Meanwhile, Irish light-heavyweight Joe Ward is through to the final of his division and will take on Cuba’s Julio La Cruz on Thursday evening.
— Michael Conlan (@mickconlan11) October 15, 2015