Ireland one boxer short at World Championships after John Joe Nevin turns pro

Last Updated: 26/09/13 4:15pm

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John Joe Nevin: Silver medalist at last year's Olympics

John Joe Nevin: Silver medalist at last year's Olympics

Sky Bet

John Joe Nevin's decision to turn professional has left Ireland without a bantamweight fighter for next month's World Championships in Kazakhstan.

The Olympic silver medalist was among 10 names submitted to world governing body AIBA by the Irish Amateur Boxing Association before he announced his intention to join the professional ranks.

Ireland attempted to replace Nevin with Gary McKenna in the 56kg division, but AIBA refused their request as the deadline for registering entries had passed.

Nevin was the only medalist for Ireland in the last World Championships two years ago in Azerbaijan, where he collected a bronze.

Ireland head coach Billy Walsh said: "John Joe will obviously be difficult to replace. He's ranked number one in the world and would have been seeded at number one in Kazakhstan.

"But our focus is on the World Championships. John Joe is not going and the rest of the squad are, and they are our focus now."

The Ireland squad is headed by two London 2012 bronze medallists in light-flyweight Paddy Barnes and flyweight Michael Conlan, who is expected to turn professional following the competition.

Walsh added: "The World Championships is always the toughest tournament - tougher than the Olympic Games. But if the team perform to their potential they are capable of doing well."

Ireland squad: Light-flyweight: Paddy Barnes; Flyweight: Michael Conlan; Lightweight: Sean McComb; Light-welterweight: Ray Moylette; Welterweight: Adam Nolan; Middleweight: Jason Quigley; Light-heavyweight: Joe Ward; Heavyweight: Tommy McCarthy; Super-heavyweight: Con Sheehan.

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