Summer of Sport

Carly’s back with a bang

For Belfast boxer Carly McNaul, 2021 was a fight like no other.

But now, after recovering from a broken femur, an eye operation and Covid-19, the 32-year-old is ready to pack a punch at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

After spending 21 months away from the ring, Carly’s comeback fight last December saw her win the flyweight crown at the Ulster Elite Championship finals.

This was the first of several wins leading to Carly’s call-up for this summer’s Games in Birmingham – the second time she will represent Team Northern Ireland in Boxing.

And this time, she’s going for gold. With 16 years since Carly’s debut, she believes the period away from the sport helped transform her career, helping her to become a completely different boxer.

She said, “I came off social media and nobody knew what I had been doing. I was just away working on myself. And I came back and when I went into the ring in the Ulster Elite Championship finals, I boxed completely differently – I’m 10 times the boxer I was in 2018.

“Nobody expected me to box the way I did, and I was able to show the world that I’m not a one-trick pony. I’m no. 5 in the world, most people know who I am.”

This summer, Team Northern Ireland, supported by funding raised by National Lottery players, will comprise over 100 athletes, and having secured her place on the squad, Carly can’t wait to step up to that ring. 

With the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games set to inspire people and communities across the country this summer, Carly hopes that sharing her story will give others the motivation to get involved in sport and turn their dreams into reality.

She says, “I’m just looking forward to getting out there and putting on great performances, and letting the world see me win that gold.”

Thanks to National Lottery players, over £40Million has gone to support the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

26th July 2022

The National Lottery has been changing the lives of winners and supporting good causes across the UK since 1994. In that time, there have been more than 6,500 new millionaires created and by playing The National Lottery you raise over £30 million for good causes every week.

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