Highlights & report: Ireland boxer Barnes in shock defeat

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Ireland’s Barnes eliminated in split decision

Ireland light-flyweight Paddy Barnes blamed weight problems as he exited the Olympic Games with a shock defeat by Spain’s Samuel Carmona.

Barnes, 29, was level with his 20-year-old opponent after two rounds but Carmona, ranked 26 in the world, took the verdict in the final three minutes.

Belfast man Barnes was hoping to win a third Olympic medal having secured bronze at Beijing and London.

“It was so hard making the weight,” said Barnes after his defeat.

“I just made the weight this morning. About six weeks ago, I was 58 kilos and now I’m down to 49. Halfway through the first round, I felt so tired.

“This weight category is not for me. I need to move up,” added Barnes, Ireland’s flag bearer at Friday’s opening ceremony.

“The fight could have gone either way but I’m actually glad he got it because there is no way I could have had the energy to fight another fight at this weight.”

The Chinese judge gave the verdict to Barnes 29-28, but the Canadian and Uzbek judges scored it 29-28 to his opponent.

Paddy Barnes was beaten by Samuel Carmona<!–

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Paddy Barnes was beaten by Samuel Carmona

The surprise defeat of their captain is a further blow for the Irish boxing team after another member of the team failed a drugs test.

Barnes said he was “devastated” by Monday’s loss after going into the event as one of the favourites to win gold.

“I really truly believed I would come away with the gold medal and for it to be taken away at the first hurdle is heartbreaking,” he added.

Barnes has hinted he intends to turn professional after the Games and acknowledged his Olympic career is now almost certainly over.

“I don’t know about another Olympics but you will still see Paddy Barnes in the ring,” he said.

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