BOXING: Katie Taylor comes up short at Olympic Games qualifier in Turkey

Katie Taylor
Katie Taylor
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Katie Taylor lost in her bid to qualify for Rio 2016 at the European Olympic qualifiers in Turkey on Friday.

The Olympic champion was beaten on a unanimous decision – 39-37 across the board – by Azerbaijan’s Yana Alexseevna in the lightweight semi-finals of the tournament after four tight rounds.

The top two females (the finalists) in each of the three Olympic weight classes for women qualify for Rio in Samsun.

Alexseevna has now qualified, along with Italy’s Irma Tessa who beat Bulgaria’s Svetlana Staneva in the the corresponding semi-final on Friday.

Taylor will meet Staneva in a box-off for third and fourth place on Sunday. But she cannot now qualify directly for Rio from Samsun, regardless of Sunday’s result.

The Bray woman will get one final opportunity to qualify for August’s Olympics at the World Women’s Championships in Kazakhstan next month.