Belfast boxer Michaela Walsh insists she has no time to lose sleep over her previous Commonwealth Games near-misses and is focused on making it third time lucky in Birmingham next month.
The 29-year-old dropped an agonising split decision to Nicola Adams in the women’s flyweight final in Glasgow in 2014 and saw history repeat itself against Skye Nicolson on the Gold Coast four years later.
Walsh has watched the likes of Adams and Ireland’s Katie Taylor go on to establish lucrative professional careers but is determined to bag an elusive major title herself before she also makes the switch.
Walsh told PA Media: “I have always wanted to turn professional and winning a world title is something I visualise, but first I want to be Commonwealth, world and Olympic champion.
“These competitions mean a lot to me. I was very disappointed to lose to Nicola in Glasgow but I can look back and take the positives because it made me a better athlete and a better person.
“Wins and losses don’t define me. Boxing is a sport that gives you the highest of highs and the lowest of lows, and that is one of the reasons I love it so much.”
Walsh will be joined in the 13-strong Northern Ireland team for the event by Amy Broadhurst, the 25-year-old from Dundalk who won the world light-welterweight title in Istanbul earlier this year.
And Walsh’s younger brother Aidan will be banking on his sister’s support when also bids to go one better than the silver medal he won in the welterweight division four years ago.
“I love going away to all the big competitions, and being able to do it with my brother just makes it all the more special,” added Michaela.
“It’s very nerve-racking watching him fighting. I would rather be in there fighting for him because everything is under my control.
“I see it from a big sister perspective, not as a boxer. He’s the opposite of me – really nice and chilled, while I’m a complete mess. He’s used to be screaming during his fights, and making a few people deaf along the way.”