Northern Ireland

London 2012: Best ever medals haul for Northern Ireland

When Thelma Hopkins, John Caldwell and Freddie Gilroy all returned to Belfast with medals from the 1956 Games in Melbourne, the total of three was the most ever won by Northern Irish athletes at the Olympics.

Hopkins had won silver in the high jump.

Boxers Caldwell and Gilroy brought back bronze medals in the flyweight and bantamweight divisions respectively.

The London 2012 Games will now have seen that total exceeded.


There will be five medals coming back to Northern Ireland.

Rowers Richard and Peter Chambers took silver in the men's lightweight fours, while Alan Campbell won a brave bronze in the men's single sculls.

Belfast boxer Paddy Barnes has to be content with his second Olympic bronze after suffering an agonising defeat in the light-flyweight semi-finals.

Fellow Belfast man Michael Conlan also won a bronze medal in the flyweight boxing competition, after losing his semi-final bout.


Meanwhile, Team Ireland has struck gold with Katie Taylor's win in the lightweight women's division, the first time women's boxing has been a competitive sport at the Olympic Games.

John Joe Nevin secured a silver medal in the bantamweight division.

Team Ireland has never had more than three gold medals from any Games and the only previous Irish boxing gold came with Michael Carruth's triumph in Barcelona in 1992.

Northern Ireland's last golds were won by Jimmy Kirkwood and Stephen Martin, who were part of the GB hockey squad, in the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

The only other gold from the summer games was won by Mary Peters in the pentathlon in 1972.

Robin Dixon clinched gold at the 1964 Winter Olympics in Innsbruck.

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