Fantastic five southern county champions
St Marys Fantastic five regional champions march on in national schoolboy championships
St Marys ABC came away from Gosport with five southern counties schoolboy champions on Sunday. First up for the saints was 11 year old Levi Lewis in the minors under 46kgs, up against T. Salmon (Hastings, West Hill). Young Lewis was a little over eager in the opening stages, but once he settled down and started using his height and reach advantages, he began to catch his opponent at will. Standing counts soon followed and the towel came in as the referee stopped the contest in the second round, making it 3 wins out of 3. With no other southern area currently holding a minor championship, it looks like Lewis is through to the upcoming national minors final against the champion of the north.
Next in at class 2 under 34kgs was Joe Tindall. For the 2nd time in the competition, Tindall was up against an opponent who had defeated him before in J. Butler (Ted Harris, Portsmouth). The opening rounds were messy as Butler looked to draw Tindall into a toe to toe battle, but a big final round when Tindall caught his opponent coming in allowed him to gain the judge’s decision on points.
Next in for the saints was Billy Eastwood (class 2 under 38kgs), after two good wins in the last couple of weeks, he came up against the much more experienced J. Hunt (Heart of Portsmouth). The capable Hunt used his jab well and Eastwood struggled to get past this and went down on points. However, his coaches think he has shown potential due to his good training ethic and weight management since joining St Marys from Brompton ABC just 6 weeks ago, so with more experience they hope he will progress.
At class 2 under 42kgs, Lewis Southgate took on B. Fowler (Heart of Portsmouth) and literally faced a tall order. Southgate looked the better boxer and caught Fowler with some very good punches, but it showed that sheer size and reach can often make the difference, with Southgate recently entering the higher weight class. Fowler was able to keep Southgate at bay for long enough periods to win on points.
One of the most exciting bouts of the day involved the next St Marys boxer involved on the day. Tom O’Sullivan took on J. Frankham (Tadley, Hampshire) at class 2 under 52kgs. O’Sullivan was always going to find it difficult against an opponent from a famous boxing family, who had only lost once before. The strong Frankham put Tom under pressure from the start as shorter Frankham looked to turn it into a brawl. O’Sullivan was often using his longer reach and catching him with clean punches on the way in, but Frankham kept marching in and was landing punches of this own. It was close going into the last, but O’ Sullivan impressed his coaches with a bravery and heart when many would have succumbed the relentless pressure. When it looked like O’Sullivan may be wilting in the final stages all of a sudden he stepped to the side to make room for a clean counter punch. At times, it was literally like a battle between a bull and matador as Frankham twice ended up head first through the ropes as Tom sidestepped one of his rushing attacks. It was very close, but the judges were obviously impressed with O’Sullivans cleaner punches and awarded to him on majority point’s decision to give him his best win to date.
A last minute pullout by left Kallum Tindall without an opponent, but him and Sam Perfect (who received a walkover) will both join the other St Marys boxers that got through in the national quarter finals on Febuary 9th, where they will box the winners of London V Western counties. Both the Tindall brothers will be up against national champions from the famous Repton club in East London and Perfect and O’ Sullivan will have their work cut out too, but they are hoping the extra training sessions at the club and sparring they have been receiving against other boxing clubs clubs will help them cause more upsets.
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