Local youngsters put up a good fight
FIVE boxers from Downend Boxing Club took to the ring when the Harry Crook Centre in Fishponds played host to the Novice National Championships 1st round, and a Somerset and Bristol v Gloucester and Wiltshire mini team match.
First up at the event on September 23 was Ashley Banks, boxing in his first contest for two years. In the 69 to 75 kilo class, he drew experienced Frome boxer Jordan Giles.
A class contest followed, with both boxers exhibiting a high level of skills and after three rounds, a split decision went the way of the Frome man.
Next up was 14-year-old Ollie Clancey, from Emersons Green. In his third contest, he faced the Weston Warriors boxer Jenson Lock.
Lock, significantly taller than the local lad, used his height and reach to great effect, while the fearless Clancey stuck doggedly to his opponent.
After an action-packed contest the Weston boxer took a points win, which left a happy Ollie pleased with this performance.
Sixteen-year-old Jack Oram was up next, representing Somerset & Bristol as he faced the Gloucester and Wiltshire representative Louis Bacon, of Cheltenham.
Bacon began well, behind a long reach, but the better shots came from the evasive Oram, who took a unanimous decision.
Taylor Andrews, also 16 and from Downend, was up next, against tough Trowbridge boxer Harry Glover.
A nervous first round saw honours even, but in the second and third Taylor adjusted his tactics to long-range boxing, earning him a unanimous points decision.
Shea Cantillon, 17, followed in a nervous first contest against Cheltenham's Ashley Stanton.
Shea's inexperience showed with a good start, but Ashley knew that bit more, which led to a scrappy contest as the Downend boxer tried to counter his skilful opponent.
Shea lost the decision, but said afterwards he is certain to be better as a result of it.
A good sporting audience enjoyed fourteen bouts of quality boxing in the centre, which now buzzes with young people's activities.