All Ireland Team Triumph at IMMAF World Cup

Photo Credit: IMMAF/Lee Hamilton-Cooper

The inaugural IMMAF World Cup took place in Prague from the 8th-11th September. For the first time in history a unified Team Ireland competed in competition at an IMMAF event. Previously, athletes from the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland have entered and competed on separate national teams.

Team Ireland had 26 athletes in total consisting of 22 athletes from the Republic of Ireland and 4 athletes from Northern Ireland which made the trip over. Joining the team of athletes was Head Coach Andy Ryan along with Danny Corr, Gerry Polorak, Marlene Griffin, Danni Neilan, Frankie Coor, Paddy Holohan, Alexander O’Sullivan and Fionn O’Rourke.

Both Junior and Senior teams took home thirteen medals in total. Shauna Bannon (Holohan Martial Arts) picked up a gold medal in the senior bantamweight division when she defeated Kerry-Ann Vernon (SBG Cork), who as a result picked up the silver medal in the all-Ireland final. Vernon picked up one of the knockouts of the tournament enroute to the final. Bannon gave birth to her son Jayce in November of 2020 which makes her run to gold all the more impressive for the Holohan Martial Arts standout.

Solomon Simon (Team Ryano Waterford) picked up a bronze medal in the senior lightweight tournament. In the Senior Strawweight division Caitlyn Hadfield (Team Ryano Causeway) took home the bronze medal and Eoin Sheridan (SGBHQ) picked up an impressive silver medal in the Senior Middleweight division. Another silver medal was picked up by Taylor Quinn (Team Ryano) in the Senior Bantamweight division.

The Junior squad finished with six medals and finished second on the overall medals table for the competition. Kiya O’Sullivan (C-Mac) picked up a gold medal in the flyweight division with her brother Alexander by her side. Kiya beat Megan Hamill (SBGHQ) in the final who brought home the silver medal with her as a result. Ryan Keogh (SBGHQ) picked up four finishes enroute to him winning the gold medal in the featherweight weight category.

Sarah Carney (Holohan Martial Arts) picked up a silver medal and Sinead Ni Nuallain (SBGHQ) picked up a bronze medal in the bantamweight tournament which rounded off a fantastic World Cup event for Team Ireland and their coaches.

See below for some pictures from throughout the tournament. Photo credit to IMMAF/Lee Hamilton-Cooper.

Coach Danny Corr, Andy Ryan, Megan Hamill, Kiya & Alex O’Sullivan and Danni Neilan.
Shauna Bannon & Kerry-Ann Vernon face off in the Bantamweight Final.
Paddy Holohan issues instructions to Taylor Quinn between rounds.
Gold medalist Ryan Keogh went undefeated in the tournament.
Shauna Bannon wins gold in the bantamweight division, Kerry-Ann Vernon took home silver.
Ian O'Neill is a Kilkenny man living in Canada. You can catch him on Twitter most of the time talking all things MMA. Follow me on Twitter and on Instagram @ioneillmma.