Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council, Paschal Fitzmaurice, has described Aoife O’Rourke’s victory in the European Championships as “one of the best sporting achievements the county has ever seen”.
The Fianna Fáil Councillor performed the role as MC when the new European Elite Women’s Middleweight champion returned home to a jubilant crowd in Castlerea.
“There was a phenomenal atmosphere at the homecoming. I was delighted to see a huge crowd welcoming her home. That was a special night and one of those golden nights that will be remembered for a long time,” Cllr. Fitzmaurice said. Cllr. Fitzmaurice believes that Aoife’s hard work has paid off and the middleweight will now set her focus towards qualifying for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year.
“She puts a huge amount of time in to training. She must be commended for how hard she works and the time she dedicates to boxing”.
Aoife is a member of the Castlerea Boxing Club and it is there where she honed the skills which enabled her to compete with and beat the best fighters in Europe last week.
Her coach Paddy Sharkey has played a huge role in Aoife’s success, according to Cllr. Fitzmaurice. “Paddy has done phenomenal work with Aoife and the club as a whole. He invests a lot of time in to the people he trains”.
Cllr. Fitzmaurice was also keen to highlight the sporting talent in the O’Rourke family with Aoife’s sister Lisa currently competing in the European Youth Championships in Bulgaria.
“Her great granddad was Dan O’Rourke who served as president of the GAA while her granddad, Donie O’Rourke was well respected within Roscommon GAA circles. Her sister Lisa is competing this week and she is coming fast down the tracks too,” he concluded.