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Dagenham Boxing Club hail hero Billy as youngster seals a hat-trick of national titles

PUBLISHED: 15:00 03 March 2020

Billy Adams with final rival Charlie Hickford

Billy Adams with final rival Charlie Hickford

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Dagenham Boxing Club’s Billy Adams became a three-time National champion at the England Boxing Youth Championships at Birtley on Sunday.

Billy Adams celebratesBilly Adams celebrates

Adams made the long trip to the North East, after the original event in Coventry was abandoned due to violent scenes, and all boxing took place behind closed doors, with only registered coaches and officials present.

Adams met the vastly experienced Blain Lambert (Laisterdyke ABC) in his semi-final, which proved a real battle of strength, power and speed.

The pair traded serious punches, with Adams using his superior footwork and speed to good effect to earn a 3-2 split decision and a fourth national final appearance.

Adams then met friend and England teammate Charlie Hickford (Hoddesdon BA) in another excellent battle of two top quality boxers, with Hickford a reigning National champion and two-time European Championship medalist.

The pair had sparred plenty of rounds at National squad sessions in Sheffield and Adams opened up in the first round, using his trademark skills to draw Hickford with his jab, then countering very quickly with his back-hand.

But Hickford pressed forward throughout and enjoyed some success of his own, before Adams went up a gear in the third round and landed some superb combinations to add the title to his Development and CYP crowns.

Father/coach Dennis Adams, a former double National champion himself, said: "Billy is a very highly-skilled and dedicated young man. He knows how much work needs to go into these championships and he doesn't cut corners.

"This win sets him up for selection as England's number one Youth boxer and big opportunities lay ahead, including the European Youth Championships, which have always been his target.

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"It's great for the club, this inspires the younger kids and Billy will be taking all his title belts to the gym on Wednesday to share his success."

Dagenham Club President Jim O'Sullivan added: Billy is a beacon of light for this club. He leads by example and helps guide our young prospects who are inspired by his amazing success.

"We're all very very proud of this young man, who we believe will now move on to international glory."

*Dagenham's Bruce Parker was hoping for revenge against Repton's Jediah Viera in the 57kg London Junior Cadet Championship final, but it was not to be.

Parker had previously dropped a razor tight split decision to Viera but in a very close first round, certainly looked comfortable.

Viera went up a gear or two in the second and outworked Parker, which continued into the third round as he picked up a unanimous points verdict and the London title.

*Two of Dagenham's senior boxers were in action at the Double Jab show on Friday, as Heavenly Bende took part in his second bout in less than a week and grabbed another impressive win.

Bende met Henry Woodhall (Double Jab ABC) in an evenly matched contest and used a sharp jab to control the bout and pick up a unanimous points verdict.

But clubmate Mahdi Abdul dropped a split points verdict against Abu Hassan (Earlsfield ABC) in their rematch.

The pair had previously met at the recent Dagenham BC show at the Roundhouse and Hassan earned a repeat win after a much tighter contest where both boxers enjoyed periods of success.

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