Andy Lee St Francis Boxing Club return. By ilovelimerick correspondent Cian Reinhardt.
Pictured above Andy Lee holding the WBO World Middleweight Title. Picture by Oisin McHugh.
Former WBO World Middleweight Champion and one of Limerick’s great all time sports people, Andy Lee, will return to his old stomping ground, St. Francis Boxing Club, for the official handing over of keys to Limerick City and County Council of a property adjacent to the club.
St. Francis’ Boxing club, which is Ireland’s oldest Boxing club, has been in need of an extension to the current clubhouse. The local authority, through its Regeneration Office, recently purchased the adjacent building to facilitate the much-needed extension of the St. Francis’ club.
Also present at Friday’s event will be Pat Ryan, President of Irish Athletic Boxing Association (IABA), St. Francis Club President Noel Griffin and a number of their young national champions, whom Andy will run the rule over as he returns to the club where his glittering career started.
Saint Francis boxing club was established in 1928 and is the longest running boxing club in Ireland. Its membership is capped at 40 members due to the size of the current premises. The extension, being facilitated by the Regeneration Programme, will allow the club to double its capacity.
Andy Lee, had a successful career both in amateur and professional boxing. The Limerick man won silver and bronze medals in the EU and European Amateur Championships respectively and also represented Ireland at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. Lee also won the WBO World middleweight title in 2014 with a 6th round TKO win over Russian Olympian Matt Korobov.
The Limerick Olympian has also earned local honours, being named as Limerick Person of the Year in 2014 following a WBO Middleweight boxing win and has also received a Civic Reception in Limerick city.