BY CHRIS MCNULTY
AT the very least it will be bronze, but Jason Quigley goes on Friday to upgrade the colour of his medal after a stunning performance to defeat Hungarian Zoltan Harsca in today’s middleweight quarter-final at the World Championships in Kazakhstan.
Quigley won all three rounds, sweeping to a 30-27, 30-27, 30-27 win at the Baluan Sholak Palace of Culture and Sports in Almaty to guarantee himself at least a bronze medal.
Harsca fought at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and came in with a high pedigree, but he was gunned down by a quite magnificent display by Quigley, who won all three rounds in emphatic style.
“I went in there and didn’t complicate things, just went in with a game plan with two or three things to do,” said the Finn Valley ABC boxer, who never looked in any trouble during the bout.
“The first thing started working and I kept it going. I caught him with a lovely right hand in the second round and he went down from it.
“I didn’t panic, I didn’t rush in to take him out of there because it’s a three round fight. If I had gone down it would have been party over, so you have to be careful and be smart. I think that’s what I was there today.”
That crisp right-hander in the second round was the moment of the fight. It was one of those typically-Quigley shots, landed neatly and with a telling sting.
The win takes Quigley onto the medal table. In the last twelve months, the Ballybofey man has won gold medals at the Irish senior, European senior and European Under 23 Championships. Today’s win over Harsca means that Quigley is unbeaten in his last 31 fights – a run that stretches back to a win against Chris Blaney at a Finn Valley ABC tournament on March 16 2012.
Quigley said: “I never really took on the record until I got into the twenties and I saw it in the papers: Quigely is 20-0 and blah, blah, blah. It’s always in the back of the head now.
“It’s something I want to keep going. People like to try and break records and for people to be looking to break mine is an achievement in its own.”
After the fight, Quigley tweeted: “Bronze assured impressive performance now back to focus and change the colour #finnvalley”
Quigley, who has already beaten Vijender Singh and Aston Brown, will look for an upgrade to silver when he takes on the Russian Artem Chebotarev in Friday’s semi-final. In his quarter-final, Chebotarev defeated Azizbek Abdugofurov from Uzbekistan by a Tko in the first round.
Quigley said: “I’m ready for anybody. I’m ready for anything. It wouldn’t matter if I was in a twelve-round fight there today.”