Six Irish golds at WAKO World Kickboxing Championships


Rustic Ivanchuk top of the podium after being crowned world champion (Photo:  Asturias 24)

Ireland claimed six world titles and 27 medals overall at the WAKO World Kickboxing Championships at Citywest, highlights of which will be broadcast in December by Irish TV.

A sell-out gala night at the Citywest Hotel featured ten of the Championships’ most attractive finals, which will be televised at a later date.

Four Irish finalists lined out for the final session, but only one lifted the world championship belt – Rustic Ivanchuk, of Ukrainian extraction, fighting out of Spartan Martial Arts in Blanchardstown.

He scored a famous victory in the men’s -57kg light contact final over Turkey’s Cebrail Gençoğlu, encouraged from his corner by instructor Robbie McMenamy, who in the previous fight had been beaten in the men’s -84kg points fighting World Championship decider by Hungary’s Zsolt Moradi.

In other gala night finals with Irish interest, Dean Barry was defeated by Emanuil Dimitrov of Bulgaria in the men’s -79kg points fighting gold-medal contest, while Dylan Heffernan lost to Hungarian Roland Veres in the men’s -57kg points fighting decider.

Six Irish gold medals were won overall –

Lily de la Cour Women’s LC -50kg
Rustic Ivanchuk Men’s LC -57kg
Rhyan Shelley Men’s LC -63kg
Des Leonard Men’s LC -69kg
Liam Dale Men’s LC V -94kg
Dave Heffernan Men’s PF V +94kg

The much-lauded Raymond Daniels won gold on his first foray at a WAKO World Championships, by winning out the men’s -89kg points fighting.

Norwegian media interest in the Championships was strong, with an NRK news crew following the fortunes of Monica Engeset in the women’s -50kg points fighting final – she lost to Italian Giulia Cavallaro in the decider – and Kristin Vollstad, beaten in the women’s -52kg full contact final by Finn Hanne Lauslehto in an all-Nordic affair.

Before trying her hand at MMA in 2016, Britain’s Natasha Baldwin bowed out of the world kickboxing circuit by winning another World Championship title at -65kg light contact.

The full list of Irish medallists from the 2015 WAKO World Kickboxing Championships reads –

Lily de la Cour – Women’s LC -50kg
Rustic Ivanchuk – Men’s LC -57kg
Rhyan Shelley – Men’s LC -63kg
Des Leonard – Men’s LC -69kg
Liam Dale – Men’s LC V -94kg
Dave Heffernan – Men’s PF V +94kg

Lauren Bradshaw – Women’s LC -70kg
Fidelma Martin – Women’s LC V +65kg
Dylan Heffernan – Men’s PF -57kg
Dean Barry – Men’s PF -79kg
Robbie McMenamy – Men’s PF -84kg
Terry Bradley – Men’s PF V -74kg
Martin Bannon – Men’s PF V -94kg

Aine Leonard – Women’s LC -60kg
Catherine McGregor – Women’s LC V -55kg
Louise Kissane – Women’s LC V -65kg
Dalton Shaughnessy – Men’s LC +94kg
Thomas Hayden – Men’s LC -84kg
Paul Coffey – Men’s LC V +94kg
Bo Mangan – Women’s PF -50kg
Caradh O’Donovan – Women’s PF -55kg
Shauna Bannon – Women’s PF -60kg
Fidelma Martin – Women’s PF V +65kg
Helen Hensey – Women’s PF V -55kg
Andy Brett – Men’s PF -89kg
Derek Deegan – Men’s PF V -63kg
Jessica Grant – Women’s MF HS

Full results HERE – 2015 WAKO World Kickboxing

LC: Light Contact – FC: Full Contact – PF: Points Fighting – MF: Musical Forms – V: Veteran

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