Boxing girls lose to split decisions
DOWNEND Boxing Club’s girls were on the wrong end of some split decisions despite some superb performances at an international tournament in Sweden.
First up at the Golden Girl Championship, from January 31 to February 2, was 14-year-old Alexa Smith, against Thareya Pederson of team Norway. Alexa gave away a significant height deficit against the classy counter-punching Norwegian boxer. Despite a determined effort from Alexa, the experience and height of Pederson paid off with a points decision.
Up next was Eloise Edwards, also 14, who met former National champion Lilly-May Underwood, of Kent. What followed was a superb exhibition of skill by both girls, exhibiting counter punching well above their experience level. After a nip-and-tuck affair, the Downend boxer dropped a 3-2 judges decision.
There was further disappointment when Jodie Horton, 23, met Weston-super-Mare's Hannah Windsor, despite both girls having travelled to Sweden to box Scandinavian opposition. The contest was exciting from the word go, with Hannah starting quickly and taking the first round, but the second and third saw the Weston girl fade and clean shots coupled with a strong finish seemed to have Jodie in front at the last bell. The judges didn't agree, however, and gave the contest to Hannah by a 3-2 split decision.
A similar fate befell 16-year-old Morgan Baber, who met another Norwegian in Ingela Eikrem. Morgan went for the taller girl from first bell to last, scoring heavily at short range and pushing the Norwegian onto the back foot. At the end of the contest, everyone present was amazed to see Eikrem's hand raised, by 3-2 split decision.
Team manager Jo Turner said: “The ladies conducted themselves superbly in all but one boxer’s first International outing.
“The performances were mature, and they all boxed to orders from coach and professional boxer Ben Demmery.
“Things look very positive for the future.”
A busy month saw the ladies join a representative team as Broad Plain and Downend played host to County Mayo's boxing team from Ireland.
Downend boxers won six of their nine contests, with the results as follows (Downend boxers listed first):
• Rocky Barney lost pts Thomas Richardson
• Shaye Pinnell lost pts James Ivers
• Eloise Edwards won pts Hope Gallagher
• Alexa Smith won pts Leah Neary
• Jay Holloway won pts Jason Butler
• Morgan Baber won pts Leah McDonough
• Jodie Horton lost pts Louise Walsh
• Taylor Andrews won pts Mark Rattigan
• Shiraz Amin won pts Mark Harding
Head coach Craig Turner said: “I am really pleased with the guys' performances. Our thanks must go to the wonderful Mayo team coaches, and Dennis Stinchcombe MBE and his team at Broad Plain.”