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Katie happy to get the ball rolling

BOXING: Katie Taylor said she was happy to "get the ball rolling" after a unanimous points victory in her opening fight in the Women's World Championship in Jeju, Korea.

Ireland's Olympic hero, aiming for her fifth World title, overcame Dominica's Valerian Spicer but it was far from an easy ride, as Spicer put up a great fight.

But as the bout progressed, Taylor started to dominate and by the fourth and final round she was in complete control and went on to secure a place in the last 16 on Thursday morning.

"It's great to get the ball rolling. The performance from the whole team has been brilliant so far. It's been a great few days so far," said Taylor.

"It's always kind of tricky getting the first one over and done with. It has been a long wait and it was good to get the lungs open again and get set up and get a good four rounds in."

Belfast bantamweight Walsh defeated Jamaica's Sarah Joe Rae on a unanimous decision.

Walsh claimed a close first round but dominated two, three and four, Rae taking two standing counts in the fourth. Walsh will now meet Azerbaijan's Anna Anna Alimardanova tomorrow while Claire Grace who sustained a cut over her left eye in Monday's win over Romania's Cristina Stanca, will be in action today.

Qatar to host 2019

World Championships

ATHLETICS: Qatar's emergence as a global sporting hub gained further clout when Doha was chosen as host city for the 2019 IAAF World Athletics Championships yesterday.

The fast-growing city alongside the Arabian Gulf will become the first from the Middle East to stage the blue riband event.

Overlooked for the 2017 championships in favour of London, the Qatari capital was selected ahead of rival bids from 1992 Olympic hosts Barcelona and the American city of Eugene, often referred to as Track Town.

Doha earned 12 votes to Eugene's nine and Barcelona's six in the initial secret ballot of the IAAF Council before winning 15-12 over Eugene in the second vote.

It is a timely boost for Qatar which has been mired in the controversy surrounding world soccer governing body FIFA's decision to award the desert nation the 2022 World Cup.

The process by which it was chosen has come under intense scrutiny and FIFA is under pressure to make public a report of its own investigation into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. Russia won the right to stage the 2018 version.


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