Dagenham youngsters shine to reach National stages of Youth/Cadet Championships
PUBLISHED: 15:30 06 February 2020
Dagenham Boxing Club youngsters were celebrating after earning success in the Regional Youth and Cadet Championships held at The Roundhouse at the weekend.
Darren Bailey beat East London Boxing Academy's Uzair Maqbal on a 3-2 split decision to avenge an earlier loss at the hands of the same opponent by the same margin three months earlier.
Bailey was busier and more accurate for two rounds and, despite dropping the final session, had done enough to win the London 52kg title.
Clubmate Billy Adams did not have it all his own way against Jon O'Donnell, from Powerday Hooks, in the 56kg semi-finals as he initially struggled to deal with his opponent's reach.
But Adams upped the pace, doubling his swift attacks to grind down the England representative and eventually pick up a deserved unanimous points victory.
"It was an impressive semi-final between two very experienced England international teammates, both with big plans for the future," said Dagenham club coach and secretary Dan O'Sullivan.
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Adams then had to face Hamza Hajee-Sharif, of East London Boxing Academy, in the final and encountered a tall, awkward opponent who had secured victory in his own semi-final bout with an impressive second round TKO on Friday.
After struggling to land his counters in the early stages of the contest, Adams soon closed down the gap to press forward and land some well-timed blows.
And he claimed a 4-1 split decision, as well as the best youth boxer award from London Boxing.
Tariq Agius received a walkover in the 49kg category, as did Sophie Locke in the 51kg section, and all four Dagenham youngsters now move into the National stages of the competition at Coventry's Connexions Sports Hall on the weekend of February 14-16.
Meanwhile, a group of 13 new club boxers were all carded to compete last week and registered with London Boxing.
Some of the newcomers will be in action at the club's next show, scheduled for The Roundhouse on Sunday February 23.
The action is due to get underway at 1pm, with a full line-up of local clubs set to feature.
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