No place in Rio but a hero's welcome home for Gardiner

Boxing

No place in Rio but a hero's welcome home for Gardiner

Clonmel boxer Dean Gardiner may have missed out on a place at the Olympic Games but he received a hero's welcome back to his home town following his silver medal at the qualifiers in Baku.

The super-heavyweight lost out in his bid to qualify for Rio 2016 after an agonising defeat to Italian boxer Guido Vianello in the final of the tournament which was the last chance to qualify for Rio.

Unfortunately for Dean only the gold medal winner in the super heavy class in the Azeri capital qualified for August's Olympics.

To mark Dean's remarkable achievement in claiming silver in Baku after a string of top class performances against world class opponents en route to the final, a reception was held in Clonmel Boxing Club attended by Mayor Pat English, Clonmel Boxing Club committee and club members, Dean's family and well wishers.

Dean recorded a last 16 win against Satir Kumar, India; he then beat the favourite for gold, Viktor Vychryst, Ukraine by a unanimous decision in the quarter final and he won another unanimous decision against Alexei Zavatin, Moldova in the semi final.

However he lost out in the final to Guido Vianello, Italy, after an admirable display. Club chairman and head coach Martin Fennessy spoke about Dean's achievements and he presented Dean with a club tracksuit to mark the occasion.