Irish and British boxing fans raise the roof at the ExCel for Katie Taylor versus Natasha Jonas…..
Irish and British boxing fans helped set a new Olympic record for noise levels for Katie Taylor’s quarter-final with Great Britain’s Natasha Jonas at the ExCel in London today.
An International Olympic Committee official said that the decibels hit 113.7 – the highest recorded at London 2012 so far.
Irish fans turned the ExCel into the National Stadium in Dublin this afternoon as Taylor beat the Liverpool southpaw in a four-round thriller to guarantee herself at least bronze.
Jonas also had her supporters at the ExCel, but rousing renditions of The Fields of Athenry and Ole,Ole,Ole, easily KO’d chants of “Team GB.”
Taylor, the current AIBA World and European lightweight champion, admitted after the contest with the gallant Merseysider that she was amazed at the level of support she received.
“It (the atmosphere) was unbelievable. I just tried to stay calm and composed. I knew the support was going to be great, but I didn’t realise it was going to be so great,” said Taylor.
Speaking on RTE’s boxing panel, Michael Carruth, Bernard Dunne and Mick Dowling, who have claimed numerous Olympic, European, Irish and professional titles between them, said they were stunned by the emotionally charged atmosphere at the ExCel.
Former WBA World champion Dunne added that if anyone still doubted the quality of female boxing they should get a DVD of the Taylor/Jonas clash, a four-rounder which he describe as top class.
Today’s victory guaranteed Irish boxing a 14th Olympic medal since John McNally won silver at the 1952 Games in Helsinki.