MATTHEW McCole has landed the top individual prize in the Donegal Boxing Board’s awards for the 2019/20 season.
Dungloe native McCole, now trading leather for the Illies Golden Gloves, has been named as the latest recipient of the Harry ‘Kid’ Duffy Cup, given to the best elite boxer in the county.
He follows the likes of fellow Illies punchers William McLaughlin and Tyrone McCullagh in getting the gong.
It was a season of his dreams on the canvas for McCole.
Last November, the Donegal welterweight defeated Mark Sammon to win an Irish senior title.
He followed up in February by reaching the Ulster Elite final, but he lost the final to Eugene McKeever at the Ulster Hall.
A couple of weeks later, McCole took the Senior 69kgs title at the Irish Third Level Boxing finals, the LyIT student defeating Terry McEntee (DCU) in the final.
Raphoe’s Leah Gallen was awarded the Billy ‘Spider’ Kelly Cup for the Best Youth. The Ballybofey woman won her sixth Irish title in late January, beating Shelby Myers from Crumlin in the Irish Under-18 final.
Gallen was expecting to travel to the European Youth Championships but the coronavirus lockdown has put those plans into the air.
Carndonagh native Rosemary Doherty, who won an Irish Senior crown last November while representing the Limerick-based St Francis BC, was named as the overall female award winner.
There were awards too for Oran Shields, Bernie McDonagh, Conan Kearney and John McDonagh.
Due to a year that was missing a large swathe of its action due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Donegal Boxing Board have decided not to award the Jimmy Murphy Cup for the club of the year for the 2019/20 season.
The awards will be handed out individually as the Covid restrictions mean that an awards ceremony is not possible at this time.
Harry ‘Kid’ Duffy Cup, Best Elite – Matthew McCole (Illies Golden Gloves)
John McLaughlin Cup, Best Senior – Oran Shields (Illies Golden Gloves)
Billy ‘Spider’ Kelly Cup, Best Youth – Leah Gallen (Raphoe Boxing Club)
Johnny McDaid Cup, Overall Female – Rosemary Doherty (Carndonagh, St Francis BC, Limerick)
Dr Denis McLaughlin Cup, Best Junior – Bernie McDonagh (Dunfanaghy ABC)
Michael Bonnar Cup, Best Juvenile – Conan Kearney (St Bridget’s ABC)
James White Memorial Shield, Most Improved Boxer – John McDonagh (Dunree ABC)