WALCOT’S Patrick McDonagh becomes the first Swindon boxer to ever compete in the World Youth Championships when he dons the Great Britain vest in Bulgaria this weekend, writes Dave Veysey.

The 17-year-old recently won the English Youth Championships and then followed it up by beating the Welsh and Scottish champions to clinch the Three Nations crown in Scotland.

Now he heads for the 2014 AIBA Youth Championships, which are being held in Sofia from the April 14-24. This tournament will serve as the only qualifying event for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games.

One-hundred-and-five nations have entered a total of 606 boxers, all aged 17 or 18. There are 506 in the 10 men’s weight categories and 100 women in their 3 classes.

McDonagh told the Advertiser before he set off: “I am very excited to be going to the World Championships. Only 10 male boxers from the whole of Great Britain have been picked, so I feel like I have done well to be chosen. It’s going to be a great experience, and I’m going to take each bout as it comes.”

Walcot coach Harry Scott said ahead of the tournament: “It is a great honour for Walcot Boxing Club to have a boxer in this prestigious event. Patrick will be up against the very best 64kgs boxers from around the world.

“It was obviously be very difficult for him – he’ll have to win at least five times just to make the quarter finals. But we have faith in Patrick, he always trains hard and gives one hundred per cent in the gym and in the ring.

“He is a very disciplined young man and a credit to our club. All of Walcot wish him well.”