It turned into a Super Sunday for Northern Ireland at the Commonwealth Games with five of our boxers sparking a gold rush in Birmingham.

Jude Gallagher, Dylan Eagleson, Amy Broadhurst and both Walsh siblings, Aidan and Michaela, topped the podium on the momentous day. The sixth boxer Carly McNall had to settle for silver.

At this year’s Games, our gold tally increased to seven, surpassing the previous record of 5 in Victoria, Canada in 1994.

Portoferra’s Sarah Magian also won silver in the 1500m yesterday.

Team NI now has 18 medals in total, our biggest haul in Commonwealth history.

But the biggest blow in Birmingham was delivered by our boxers.

Gallagher was the first to claim gold after opponent Joseph Comey withdrew from the featherweight final.

Eagleson followed that up with gold, albeit this time in the ring, as he did with a unanimous decision win over Ghana’s Abraham Mensah in the lightweight final.

Aidan Walsh won the welterweight division with a unanimous points win over Mozambican Thiago Osorio Muxang.

Broadhurst quickly followed that up with a unanimous decision victory over Gemma Richardson in the women’s flyweight final.

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Michaela Walsh

And Mikaela Walsh capped things off with another one-sided performance in the women’s featherweight final with a unanimous decision win over Nigeria’s Elizabeth Oshoba.

The quintet join swimmer Bethany Firth and the men’s lawn bowling team among Northern Ireland’s gold-winning athletes.

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Bethany Firth is celebrating

Last night Paddy Barnes Sr, father of Paddy Barnes, who himself won gold at the 2010 and 2014 Commonwealth Games, said the NI boxers were “unbelievable”.

Mr Barnes said their success was “not entirely unexpected” because of Northern Ireland’s history with the sport.

“We know how good we are, we know how hard we work and that’s a testament to the coaches and the clubs and what they’ve done around them.”

Asked if there had been an increase in the number of young people wanting to take up the sport, Mr Barnes said “success always helps, but our clubs in the North are already overcrowded”.

“What I want to see is more investment in boxing, we’ve been under-invested for years and we’re a leading part of Ireland in boxing, not only at the Commonwealth Games but at the Olympics. It’s time for the government to cough up more money.”

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Michaela Walsh after the win

Antrim Boxing Association official Malachy Scott echoed Mr Barnes’ comments, saying our Games heroes were “absolutely fantastic”.

“It’s great for all boxing clubs, their families right through to grassroots clubs. We have about 60 clubs here in Co Antrim and everyone is celebrating,” he said.

“It’s going to attract a lot more support for kids of all ages in the sport, we have kids who are looking to develop themselves both in sport and personally.”

The Games come to an end tonight with Co Down rockers Ash among the performers at the star-studded closing ceremony.

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