Taylor's win 'lifts spirit of nation'


President Michael D Higgins tonight saluted Katie Taylor’s Olympic triumph, saying she had lifted the spirits of the nation.

As Taylor’s heroic victory reverberated around the world, Mr Higgins sent his personal congratulations to the Bray boxer for “a deserved victory”.

"I want to offer my sincere congratulations to Katie, who has represented this country with such courage, skill and pride over many years."

“She truly deserves this historic and hard earned victory; it is a just reward for her dedication and commitment over the years," Mr Higgins said.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny was also gushing in his praise for Taylor.

“Katie Taylor is not only an Olympic champion, she is a force of nature whose pioneering spirit and boxing brilliance have seen her realise her personal dream of winning Olympic gold,” Mr Kenny said.

“In doing so she has set an exceptional standard and there is no doubt that she is a role model that many will follow.

“She has won the hearts and minds of the Irish people who admire her greatly and love her to bits.”

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin described Taylor as “a once in a generation athlete who has achieved her Olympic destiny.”

The North’s Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness also sent his congratulations to Taylor, saying the nation had been united behind her Olympic bid.

Bray Town Council is planning a major homecoming party for its newly crowned Olympic champion on Monday.

The boxer is to be paraded in an open-top bus along the town’s seafront in advance of a fireworks display, the council said this evening.

Labour Wicklow TD Anne Ferris said: "A true sporting legend, Katie’s talent has not only transformed how people think about female boxing, but has also inspired a new generation that with enough discipline and will power, barriers can be overcome to lead to international greatness."

Fine Gael TD for Wicklow Billy Timmins said Taylor’s victory was the culmination of years of hard work aligned to genius.