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Commonwealth Games 2014: Northern Ireland boxers end gold medal drought in boxing


Gold medallist Paddy Barnes (2ndL) of Northern Ireland poses with silver medalist Devendro Laishram (L) of India and bronze medalists Fazil Juma Kaggwa of Uganda and Ashley Williams (R) of Wales during the medal ceremony for the men's lightfly (49kg) Final at SSE Hydro during the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. Photo - PTI

Glasgow: Northern Ireland finally ended their gold medal drought at the Commonwealth Games on Sunday with wins for Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlan in the boxing finals

Barnes defeated Devendro Laishram of India in the light-flyweight final, and later Conlan outpointed Qais Ashfaq of England in the bantamweight showdown.

Joe Fitzgerald though failed to make it three out of three as he lost the lightweight final to Scotland's Charlie Flynn.

For Barnes, the win was doubly sweet as he became the first boxer in Commonwealth Games history to retain a title.

"That makes it extra special to me, and even more so because I'm the team captain. It's a top-quality feeling and the gold is for the whole team."

Andrew Moloney of Australia took the flyweight gold outclassing tough Pakistani Muhammad Waseem.

The first of the 13 boxing golds went to England's Olympic champion Nicola Adams who edged a close contest with Michaela Walsh on a split flyweight decision.

England were earlier dealt a double blow in team events at with defeats in the semifinals of the women's netball and the men's hockey.

The netballers went down 35-34 to New Zealand with Marai Tutaia sinking the winner in the final two seconds after a misplaced pass from Kadeen Corbin as the English pushed forward in search of glory.

The defending champion Silver Fearns will play top-ranked Australia, who defeated Jamaica, in Sunday's final.

"They are really good in turning every trick out, and trying to turn the ball over. And that's exactly what they did," England goal shooter Jo Harten said.

"They've got some top notch players, world class players. And they dealt it to us in those final seconds."

Australia comfortably saw off England 4-1 in the hockey semis and will face India, who cam back from 0-2 down to defeat New Zealand 3-2, for their fifth consecutive Commonwealth Games gold.

The first two golds on the penultimate day of competition, meanwhile, went to Nigeria's women powerlifters with Esther Oyema topping the women's lightweight category and Loveline Obiji the heavyweight, both with world record heaves.

A total of 33 golds were up for grabs on a busy on Saturday schedule with notably Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce headlining two Jamaican quartets bidding for victories in the men's and women's 4x100m relays at Hampden Park.

Bolt made a highly-anticipated return to the track in anchoring his team through the heat, Fraser-Pryce doing the same for a strong women's foursome also including multiple world and Olympic medallist Veronica Campbell-Brown and Kerron Stewart.

"I'm happy to be part of the relay team and be one country and be part of the Commonwealth," said Bolt.

There are also finals in the men and women's 4x400m relay races, England able to call on Christine Ohuruogu, the current world 400m champion and former Olympic and Commonwealth gold medallist.


Other finals include the women's pole vault and 5,000m, and the men's triple jump and javelin.

In the women's hockey final, Australia, having won three of the last four Commonwealth Games golds, tackle England who have never won the title.

Australia have scored 32 goals and conceded just one at the Glasgow tournament and boast the top scorer in Jodie Kenny who has nine goals.

In squash, India's Dipika Pallikal and Joshna Chinappa face English top seeds Jenny Duncalf and Laura Massaro for gold in women's doubles.

Table tennis also ends with three golds to be decided in men's singles, women's doubles and mixed doubles.

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