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Jack Shelly

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Jack, who is the son of Johnny and Al Shelly, last week won the All-Ireland under 48kg boxing title in the Bay 1 class in the National Stadium, Dublin.
Jack is quite an all-round sportsman, playing football and hurling for his school and for Mullinahone, as well as boxing. Jack is a newcomer to the boxing ring having only taken up boxing last September.
He is a member of Callan Boxing jack_shellyClub where he was trained by Michael Quirke also of Clonagoose. Although he is a newcomer to the sport, Jack is soaked in boxing tradition. His father, Johnny and his late uncle, Mick Shelly were both quiet successful boxers at a high level.

For the two months prior to the championships Michael and Jack worked hard in preparation first getting through the counties, then the Leinster championship until finally the morning of the National Stadium in Dublin dawned. Three days were spent in Dublin with Jack getting a by on the first day. The second day he knocked out his opponent in 73 seconds, but nothing was to prepare them for the day of the finals.

Final weigh in was at 8am. Mike had been working with Jack on his weight for the past 8 weeks and Jack had been a trooper, on the final day he weighed 3 pounds under. He was now free to eat whatever he wanted until his fight that night. And eat he did. He needed to build his strength the final. Ah the gusto of youth, Mike and Johnny on the other hand couldn't eat a thing all day with nerves.


The Final
In the final, Jack faced I. Whitehead from the Bracken Boxing Club in Dublin . He began well but was still behind at the end of round one on the computer. Round two was better for Jack, but no one knew until the very end. There was no sure winner here. It turned out to be much closer than anybody expected. But when the arm went up for the Callan club, Jack's bus load of supporters from Callan and Mullinahone raised the roof for the first All-Ireland boxing Champion to come out of Callan for 60 years.The computer had Jack ahead by 28 to 23. Michael Quirke is now 3/0 for training All-Ireland champions at this weight of 48kg. Stephen O'Brien and Robbie Ryan both took home titles in this weight when boxing for Mullinahone Boxing Club.

Michael Quirke proved that not only could he box in his time and wear our nations colours but that he is an excellent trainer and can pass on the skill to our youth.



"And I wouldn't much care for Sierra Leone, If I hadn't seen Killenaule
And the man that was never in Mullinahone,
Shouldn't say he had travelled at all."


poet. C.J. Boland