Taylor wins Gold for Ireland! Next up: Belfast’s Barnes

Katie Taylor: Ireland’s finest; Olympic Champion

One of the few forces in London to rival the power of our 132 pound five times* World Champion has been the unrestrained guttural roar of her crowd. SportsIllustrated has been caught off guard almost as much by the ferocity of her followers as by the technical excellence of the Irish champion they’ve described as “virtually unbeatable

“Katie Taylor popped out of the tunnel and, suddenly, you couldn’t hear your mother if she was standing in front of you with a bullhorn.”

Taylor’s a class act who’s apparently subsumed all the fight that’s drained from Ireland’s governing class. And that’s just in her left hand.

Next up is Belfast’s Paddy Barnes who’s facing a daunting semi-final test against China’s Zou Shiming. Barnes, as the BelTel reminded us, has already established himself “as only the second Irish athlete (and the first boxer) to medal at different  Olympiads”

Good luck Paddy!

Well done Katie! Tremendous!

Update: Barnes went on to life a Bronze for Ireland. In one of the closest boxing bouts in the Olympics, it took a countback to separate rate Barners from his victor, China’s Zou Shiming.

*Correction: The cited SportsIllustrated piece reported Taylor thus: “She is a five-time world champion, a four-time European champion with around 150-plus amateur fights.” As one commentator rights points out below, Taylor is actually 4 times world champion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Alias

    It’s great that she won the gold and good to hear speak after her win about how important her religious faith is to her and the important role it played in her win. As role models go, even young Christians need them.

  • Mark

    Natasha Jonas must still be suffering from Katie’s left hook as she kept referring to her as Nicola in a post fight interview on the BBC ( had to flick as you do ) . The boys on RTE seemed like they were on Death Row waiting for the bout but they needn’t have worried .

    To come back the way she did in the third round was just brilliant and showed great character . She seems so modest and down to earth and the world is her oyster .

    Here’s hoping Paddy Barnes can win gold tomorrow …..fingers crossed .

  • Mark

    I wasn’t going to go there myself with the religious angle but fair play to you alias as I should have . It won’t just be the American promotors knocking on her door ….

  • Alias

    I know that being religious in Ireland today is a bit like being black in Alabama in the 60s, but as she’s of a protestant denomination, the religion-haters will be too scared to squeal about the importance of her religious belief to her for fear of being accused of being anti-Protestant and sectarian. Oddly enough, there is no corresponding fear of being seen as anti-Catholic. Hence the haters would squeal freely – after the celebration of the win and a cooling period, natch – were she of that denomination.

  • Mark

    I wouldn’t disagree with you there …..I think we can both agree that regardless of which denomination she is from , she has the ability to inspire a generation of young kids which can’t be a bad thing .

  • Alias

    Yup, and for having the courage of her religious beliefs. It’s admirable that she chose to put her faith front and centre. Young Christians need an example such as her to let them see that faith isn’t something they should be ashamed of or try to hide or something that has no practical value in their lives, as is the message that they get from a small but vocal minority in the media and on the left of the political spectrum. As much as she can inspire them via her success in athletics, her courage can inspire them there to.

    Now let’s just hope her father doesn’t have 15 mortgages and 15 empty houses in Bray or it’s all over…

  • A Good day.
    Watching her is exhausting.

  • Pete Baker

    All credit to Katie Taylor for keeping it together under the massive pressure of the crowd’s expectation for the four times world champion.

    That pressure showed during the fight. She only won one round, lost one and drew two. But held on to win overall. It was a close-run thing.

    And a shout out to the first women’s Olympic Boxing Champion, Nicola Adams. Who beat an opponent, impressively, whom she had lost to in the two previous times they had fought – in the world championships.

    Not to mention Wales’ first[?] gold medal of this Olympics. [Dewi? – Ed] The Taekwondo 2012 Olympic Champion, 19-year-old Jade Jones. The first British Taekwondo Olympic Champion.

  • Mark

    That’s even better than nine times out of ten Pete .

  • Youknowho

    Kaite Taylor once punched a horse. Today, its descendants are called Giraffes.

  • Pete Baker

    Jade Jones had also, IIRC, lost to her Chinese opponent in the last world championships.

  • Youknowho

    Alias, do you think there is a difference of perception of Taylor between NI and RoI based on her faith?

  • BluesJazz

    Nicola Adams wasn’t mentioned in the op. Being Black and British are not in the RoI rollcall of celebration.

    Now that they (Republic of Ireland) have equalled Grenada’s medal count, how about a mention of Jamaica’s stunning performance.

    As for Katie Taylor’s belief that God handed her victory, that’s a popular theory among athletes. And the finger to the sky meme becoming popular, in the same way wearing a baseball hat backwards. groupthink.

  • Pete Baker

    There’s also an Irish link to the best performance of the night.

    The 63-year-old Brother Colm O’Connell, coach of new world record holder, first sub 1:41min, and 2012 Olympic 800m Champion, Kenyan runner David Rudisha.

  • BluesJazz

    In case anyone thinks I’m being fatuous, I believe it is possible that God also wanted Glasgow Celtic to beat FC Helsinki on Wednesday night. He moves in mysterious ways.

  • Mark

    He certainly does , just ask all the Rangers fans .

  • gary oh

    I wouldn’t give a damn about her religion. Only in places like northern ireland is it an issue. Any golds from NI? No just wendy the cryer givin out she was left out. Great performance by adams? Its a bit unblievable maybe there’s something suspect there. Just kidding folks its only the chinese that get suspected of cheating when they do really well.

  • gary oh

    I am starting to think this place brings out the worst in me.

  • Pete Baker

    gary oh

    “Great performance by adams? Its a bit unblievable maybe there’s something suspect there.”

    You obviously didn’t see the fight.

    On the other hand, John McEnroe did cast doubt on the Taylor verdict…

  • “John McEnroe did cast doubt on the Taylor verdict…”

    John McEnroe, former boxer, experienced and authoritative boxing pundit. Yeah he knows his stuff all right!

  • gary oh

    Boxers who suddenly start performing wonders are often suspected of taking performance enhancing drugs. Am not sayin that’s what happened for a second. John Mcenroe is hardly an authority on amateur boxing. Nearly all independant analysts have taylor winning the fight I suspect the few that don’t live in north east ulster. Funny that.

  • Pete Baker

    “John McEnroe, former boxer, experienced and authoritative boxing pundit. Yeah he knows his stuff all right!”

    All true, Ulick. But he did, nonetheless. Not that I place much authority in his opinion.

    It was, after all, a response to gary oh’s ignorant comment on a fight he obviously hadn’t seen.

  • gary oh

    Like I said I don’t doubt for a second that adams destroyed the chinese girl. I just saw it, a lovely genuine girl and from leeds to. She got a great reception from the fans. Just that when the chinese girl won the swimming the americans were falling over themselves to call her a cheat.

  • Mister_Joe

    This was wonderful for this young woman. All of the athletes seem to be class people. The naysayers should say nothing.

  • gary oh

    U set your stall out immediately with the grudging praise for katie. And you misunderstood my point entirely. Let me shine a light for you. Adams had previously struggled against the chinese world champion and suddenly blows here away. Now when chinese athletes show adramatic improvement in form they are accused of cheating.

  • Mister_Joe

    gary,

    Stop digging that hole.

  • gary oh

    As usual mister joe is the voice of reason. A wonderful achievement by both boxers. Seeing the bray councillors on Vincent browne bask in her glory is a bit sickening especially when they refused funding for boxing in bray.

  • gary oh

    I boxed myself in mister joe and tried to dig up! I was petty there, I get very tribal on slugger. And me that used to always say that national identity was a social construct. Am as nationalist as the rest but worse I try to pretend otherwise.

  • Mister_Joe

    OK gary. It was pretty disgusting what the USA coach said about the Chinese girl.

  • gary oh

    A total lack of class. Competition usually breeds a bad attitude like that. I have been so impressed with the likes of sir chris hoy and Brad wiggins who despite unbelievable achievements seem like down to earth ordinary guys.

  • Lionel Hutz

    Brad Wiggins and the Sky team have come in for criticism from that guy who is always around accusing people of taking drugs. Lackof transparency or something. Anyway,Congratulations to Katie, Adams and Jones.

    I will not congratulation the show pony thing. Jesus why not make crufts an Olympic sport

  • Alias

    Youknowho, I’ve no idea. I can’t see why there would be; or, if there is, why it would be a substantial difference.

    I don’t think that the general public is as anti-faith as the media and a small militant anti-religious ilk would like to present them as being. I’ve heard some silly comments along the lines of “Oh, why doesn’t she thank g-d when she loses too?” but they’re just repeating those ready-made lines because they think they’re being clever or witty in some way.

    I think the media will simply continue to ignore Katie Taylor’s faith, no matter how many times she cites it as a factor in her success, for two reasons: (a) they don’t want to draw public attention to expressions of support for faith, and (b) they’re afraid that an accusation of sectarianism will be made against them if they ridicule or otherwise dismiss her beliefs.

    As is fairly obvious from the support she enjoys, the public couldn’t care less which faith she upholds. It’s not a factor at all: some will think she’s bonkers, whether it is Catholic bonkers or Protestant bonkers, but most just don’t care.

    Personally, I just think it’s a positive that someone who is a role model to others is also unashamedly religious.

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    Certainly a day for the woman of the British Isles 🙂

  • Tochais Síoraí

    Well done, Katie. Seems like she’s one of those people who could’ve made it in any sport – she scored one of the best ever goals by an Irish international soccer player too – ROI, NI, Men, Women! – Can’t find it on youtube but it’s gotta be there somewhere!

    (Just wish she wouldn’t keep bangin on about that Palestinian cult leader from two thousand years ago!)

  • Padraigin Drinan

    As a tenant of Conway Mill where the club of Michael Conlon and Paddy Barnes is situated I am so proud of their achievements.
    They are a credit to themselves, their families and the areas they come from.
    Congratulations to both of them.

  • Mr Beach

    Fair play to Katie and the result could have gone the other way. I am intrigued though that God wanted her to punch the other girl in the face more than she did!

  • Billy Pilgrim

    There were tears in the Pilgrim household during the medal ceremony. Sad to say, but I realised it had been quite a while since I’d last felt so completely and actively proud of my country. Thank-you for that, Katie.

    Congratulations also to Nicola Adams on her fabulous victory. Her ferocity and courage in getting right into the face and battering the lugs off of a superior opponent reminded me of Tyrone’s All Ireland win over Kerry in 2008.

  • The reason KT isn’t attracting scorn over her religion thing is probably because it involves personal belief. If she loses the head and starts going down the theo-political road then we’re in a different situation.

    I don’t have a lot of time for godbothering in public, notably by people at the Grammys, but this is a girl who at 11 wanted to be an Olympic champion in an event which did not exist. Not only is she now said champion, she worked to make it an Olympic sport. How many 26 years olds do you know are still f@rting around waiting for someone to tell them what to do with their lives. Good woman Katie – made me proud in Toronto yesterday even if I didn’t have Jimmy Magee’s commentary to go with it.

  • GavBelfast

    Bad luck, Paddy, but it was a truly valiant effort!

    He was very sporting towards his opponent, too, at the end, and also spoke well (and slightly slower than he has done, so even I understood it all!) when interviewed by the BBC’s Garry Richardson afterwards. Well boxed, but bad luck.

    Belfast can be proud of him!

  • HeinzGuderian

    I’m proud of my total faith in Santa……..not sure how much that has helped me achieve my goals,(or lack off),as the case may be ? 😉

  • Alias

    “The reason KT isn’t attracting scorn over her religion thing is probably because it involves personal belief.”

    That is not consistent with the general practice of regurgitating anti-religious rhetoric in public by a small ilk who are supplied with ready-made templates for the purpose (now that might be ironic if not for a larger ilk), and immediately contradicted by the regurgitation of anti-religious rhetoric:

    “I don’t have a lot of time for godbothering in public…”

    An example of attracting scorn for personal belief.

  • babyface finlayson

    Well done that girl.
    Appropriately enough for someone of her faith she came back from the dead in the third.

  • Greenflag

    ‘she came back from the dead in the third’

    Indeed and why would’nt she shure don’t we all know what the difference is between a dead Dutchwoman and a dead Irishwoman ? and if we don’t we should !

    The difference ye see is that when a Dutchwoman is dead she’s dead -thats it end of story but with a dead irishwoman you have to watch her for three days and three nights because she may rise again 😉

    Well done the Bray girl and all the other boxers . Were there any girls or lads from Ballsbridge or Foxrock or Dundonald or the Malone Road among the medal winners -Thought not !

  • Greenflag

    @Alias ,

    If you carry on with these kind of comments somebody someday is going to ask whether you are a Catholic Jew or a Protestant Jew ;)? Lets hope that somebody isn’t a Palestinian eh ?

    Anyway God has more things not to be doing than sitting in the corners of boxing rings I’d guess 😉

  • Pete Baker

    Ruarai

    The original post should, by now, have been amended to note that it’s not Kate Taylor, the five times World Champion.

    It’s Katie Taylor the four times World Champion.

    We’re not tomorrow’s chip paper, after all…

  • andnowwhat

    Very true Pete.

    We’re less than that 🙂

  • Ruarai

    See update in post: Original mistake regarding Taylor’s number of world championship titles is in cited SportsIllustrated piece. As written above:

    Update: Barnes went on to life a Bronze for Ireland. In one of the closest boxing bouts in the Olympics, it took a countback to separate rate Barners from his victor, China’s Zou Shiming.

    *Correction: The cited SportsIllustrated piece reported Taylor thus: “She is a five-time world champion, a four-time European champion with around 150-plus amateur fights.” As one commentator rights points out below, Taylor is actually 4 times world champion.

    Note: Pete, thanks for catching that. Friendly tip though, whether you’re suggesting that SportsIllustrated specifically or professional newspapers generally are “yesterday’s chip paper”, it’s shaky ground when your context is comparison with Slugger’s humble endevours. We’re collectively vulnerable to ridicule if individual Slugger contributors use that kind of language when comparing this voluntary enterprise with professional papers – whether the pros eventually wrap chips or not. Perspective, please.

  • Pete Baker

    Ruarai

    As a lobbyist, your “friendly tip” about “professional newspapers” is taken with an extra grain of salt.

    Perspective, indeed.

    “We’re collectively vulnerable to ridicule if individual Slugger contributors use that kind of language when comparing this voluntary enterprise with professional papers”

    Speak for yourself…

    Accuracy is the issue, not professed professionalism.

  • Ruarai

    Not sure if you’re suggesting I’m a lobbyist (so much for your interest in accuracy) or telling me that you are (I couldn’t care less). Peace and love brother.