Aidan Walsh secures Ireland's first Olympic medal in boxing since 2012
"I'm getting better and better every fight."
Ireland is renowned for its boxing prowess at the Olympics, but unbelievable, Aidan Walsh's win over against Merven Clair of Mauritius, secures the nations first medal in the sport, since 2012.
Katie Taylor, Paddy Barnes, and Michael Conlan, all went into the 201r Olympics with so much promisie, following their glittering success at the London 2012 tournament.
However, it was disappointment in Rio, but Belfast's silky southpaw has ended that unfortunate run, with a hugely impressive performance in the welterweight quarter-finals.
"It's incredible, I watched those guys in the gyms all the time. Paddy Barnes, Mick Conlan... seeing them coming back to Belfast on the big buses.
"The amount of training I've put in and the amount of sacrifices... my coaches, my club coaches, my family and girlfriend, everybody has given me so much support and I'm just so grateful.
'He's fighting Ireland's Aidan Walsh!' - @aidanwalsh997 is looking forward to his semi-final bout against Britain's Pat McCormack on Sunday after securing bronze#boxing #olympics #tokyo2020 #RTESport
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— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) July 30, 2021
"I just do what the coaches tell me. They come up with a game plan and you just do it, just listen. Boxers say it's like a computer game, they're playing a computer game, I'm just the operator in it and doing my best to do what they're telling me to do.
"I'm happy with my performance but I want to progress on. You want to be the best and I feel like I'm improving all the time."
Walsh will now face Britain's McCormack next, who has beaten the Belfast native on their three previous meetings, but the southpaw was not deterred or discouraged.
"He faces Ireland's Aidan Walsh, that's the way I'm looking at it.
"It's just going in there with the belief that you can beat anybody, with the right tactics and coaches. I'm getting better and better every fight."
Walsh also paid tribute to "my best friend" and older sister Michaela, who also competed in Tokyo and was cheering him on in full force.
"When I was younger, everybody was afraid of my big sister, it wasn't a big brother!
"I would do anything for her and she would do anything for me.
"If it wasn't for her I wouldn't be here because I would have stopped boxing. When I was younger, running about the streets, she was the one who told me 'wind your neck in' and saw the talent I had."