London 2012 Olympian and defending middleweight champion Darren O’Neill is out of the 2013 Elite National Championships after dropping a countback decision to Jason Quigley on Saturday.

Both boxer were tied at 13-13 at the end of a cracking 75kg quarter-final before Quigley’s hand was raised in victory on accepted scores (49-38) at the National Stadium.

The current European U-23 champion took the first two rounds to lead 9-7 going in the third, but O’Neill, who beat Quigley in the 2010 and 2011 Elite finals, claimed the final frame 6-4 before losing out on a countback.

Besides O’Neill’s exit, there were few surprise on day two of the Championships, with most of the pre-tournament favourites advancing to the semi-finals. 

London 2012 Olympian Adam Nolan, current European champion Ray Moylette, Eric Donovan, David Oliver Joyce, Willie McLaughlin, John Joe Joyce, Roy Sheehan and Tommy McCarthy booked their tickets into the last-four.

It was a good day for Ireland’s WSB boxers, with David Oliver Joyce, McLaughlin, Conrad Cummings and Eric Donovan all winning, Donovan courtesy of a walkover.

Waterford’s Ronan Date, who won the praises of Irish coach Zuar Antia for his performances at the inaugural European U-23 Championships last December, KO’d Niall Murray in the third round this afternoon.

Meanwhile, reigning light-heavyweight champion Joe Ward received a bye into the 81kg final.

The Moate BC southpaw and current European champion awaits the winner of the Ken Egan versus Davey Joe Joyce semi-final next weekend.