YOUNGSTER Elise Glynn is all smiles after being crowned the new England ABA Junior National Champion in Gateshead.
The 14-year-old, from Solihull, returned to the scene of her semi-final victory at Birtley Boxing Club and went one better last Sunday by beating her older opponent Jessie Wrightson to claim the 54kf title.
Under the watchful eye of the England national coaches and a packed out crowd, Elise adopted to the direct fighting style of Jessie in the opening round and she made use of her superior footwork to confound Jessie and punish her with punching power.
Two powerful right-handed back hands shook Jessie and as the round drew to a close the referee administered a standing eight count.
The second round started in a similar fashion as the first with Elise keen to impress the judges and she did just that with a right-handed back hand which shook her opponent and forced the referee to bring the fight to an end because of a technical knockout.
Elise, who trains at Solihull Community Amateur Boxing Club, enjoyed the victory and laid to rest her defeat as a novice in last year’s final. It also crowned a year in which she has been invited to participate in both the West Midlands flagship ‘Fight like a girl’ programme and the England ABA Junior Development Programme.
“Jessie was brave and I couldn’t take a win for granted,” said a delighted Elise. This feels brilliant – I knew I would do it if I worked hard enough and now I am National Champion.”
Coach Paul Archer was just as pleased with the win, adding: “The referee was right – Jessie was hurt and would have suffered more if the fight had gone on.
“Elise has improved dramatically, she is mobile and powerful. If she continues to commit she will continue to improve and she will go far.”
There is no rest for Elise now as she heads back to the gym this week before attending an England ABA Junior Boxing Camp at the National Institute for Sport in Sheffield.
Also in action at Gateshead was Solihull’s Joshua Hamilton who beat Douvall Tayor from Guildford in the final of the England Boxing Junior Championships.
Joshua, who trains at Solihull based boxing club West Warwicks ABC, had qualified for Sunday’s finals after winning both the Birmingham Championships and the Midland Championships in previous weeks.
Despite being considerably less experienced than his opponent, Joshua won a unanimous decision to capture the prestigious belt.
West Warwicks head boxing coach Paul Gilmore said: “Josh is an immensely talented, hard working and focused boxer.
“He is an inspiration to all the other junior members at West Warwicks boxing club. I hope many of them try to emulate Josh’s achievements.”
Just like Elise, Joshua travels to the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield for England training as he prepares to box for his country in the Tri Nations Championships in Cardiff on Bank Holiday weekend.