A meeting to resolve the ongoing row in Irish boxing ended abruptly this evening after the President of the IABA Pat Ryan failed to turn up and did not contact Sport Ireland or the Department of Sport.
RTÉ News understands there is a split in the board of the IABA. CEO Fergal Carruth was at the meeting.
Sport Ireland, the Department and other members of the IABA are trying to reconvene the meeting for later tonight or tomorrow morning.
Irish amateur boxing officials were summoned to the office of the Minister for Sport in a bid to iron out selection problems for next month’s European Boxing Championships in Ukraine after the rejection of the team put forward by new high-performance director Bernard Dunne (pictured) to the IABA’s Central Council last week.
Dean Gardiner was chosen to represent the nine-man team at super-heavyweight, ahead of reigning national champion Martin Keenan, but the pair will now meet in a box-off for the place on Wednesday.
National welterweight champion Dean Walsh was also omitted, with Olympian Steven Donnelly getting the nod.
Results at the European Championships will determine qualification for the world championships in Hamburg in August.
It’s the latest development in an ongoing schism between elected IABA officials and Sport Ireland, who recommended in its review of performances at the Rio Olympics that the high-performance unit should have power over the program, including team selection and financial and budgetary issues.
A letter from Sport Ireland chief executive John Treacy alleges that Dunne’s authority is being “undermined”.
It read: “The IABA is faced with a crisis arising from recommendations of the Performance Director not being accepted by Central Council.”
Treacy also states that funding for the IABA high performance program is depended on acceptance of a new rule book that implements the Rio Review by the end of June.