A Bronze medal for Kariss

Macclesfield’s Karriss Artingstall rued a sluggish start in a razor-thin split decision defeat to Japan’s Sena Irie but the featherweight will use her Olympic bronze as motivation to go all the way at Paris 2024.

Kariss, who had guaranteed herself a medal by defeating Australia’s Skye Nicolson, lost the first round of the semi-final contest in the women’s 57kg category on every scorecard.

Both fighters landed eye-catching blows and while there was little to split them, Artingstall’s work found favour with three of the officials. But it was Irie who advanced to the gold medal match when the scores were totted up.

Three of the judges gave Irie the nod at 29-28, with the other two swaying towards Artingstall by the same scoreline.

After her involvement in Japan was ended, the Karriss reflected with some regret at how she started on Saturday.

Kariss, a gunner in the British Army who has also won bronze at world and European level, was the last of the Team GB boxers to qualify for Tokyo 2020.

“My goal out here was to get myself on that podium and just correct a few wrongs I’d done wrong in (the qualifiers in) Paris, just to show the people around this world at 57kg that I’m not to be messed with,” Artingstall said.

“I know I can beat all the girls at my weight on my day. They’re going to be very, very close fights, don’t get me wrong, but I know on a good day of mine I can edge them, edge every single round and I can win the fights.

“Unfortunately today wasn’t my day but I’ve been on GB for two and a half years and I’ve left with an Olympic medal. I’m a world medallist, I’m a European medallist, come Paris in 2024 I’ll be taking that top spot. I want to go to the Olympics when it’s not in the presence of a pandemic. I want to experience it at its best.

“I tried my best, I managed to pick it back up in the second and (in the third) I felt I was giving her three in return for one of hers. But I’m not going to moan about the decision, it was very, very close.”

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