Frus­trat­ing dou­ble for MBBC fi­nal­ists

Macclesfield Express - - TRAVEL - BOX­ING SHELDAN KEAY

MBBC had a frus­trat­ing day at the Ju­nior Na­tional AIBA Fi­nals in Liver­pool af­ter Jess Zo­lasko and Tommy Healy suf­fered two con­tro­ver­sial de­feats in fights it seemed they had won.

The stan­dard of box­ing was ex­cep­tional as the best in the coun­try were set to pit their skills in the ring against each other, so for the Macc box­ers to be there was al­ready a mas­sive achieve­ment.

MBBC’s first fi­nal­ist of the day was Jess Zo­lasko, who was so switched on and ready to give her best against a very ex­pe­ri­enced strong girl from West Ham Box­ing Club, as she fought Euro­pean cham­pion Caro­line Dubois, the sis­ter of pro­fes­sional boxer Daniel Dubois.

Round one saw Zo­lasko set a fast pace, tak­ing it to the Lon­doner and putting pres­sure on her, which proved ben­e­fi­cial as Dubois was not com­fort­able with it.

Zo­lasko had suc­cess catch­ing her op­po­nent with good shots and Dubois looked to the ref­eree as she com­plained her head guard had moved, al­low­ing time to get her breath back, which was a clever move from an ex­pe­ri­enced kid.

Dubois was strong and when she did catch Zo­lasko to­wards the end of the round, they looked to be hard shots.

The in­struc­tion for Zo­lasko in be­tween rounds was to keep push­ing on as it was work­ing, so again Zo­lasko threw strong straight shots catch­ing Dubois and putting her un­der pres­sure.

Dubois was still com­ing back with strong shots but as soon as the pres­sure got too much she pulled the head guard trick again, the sec­ond time in as many rounds so this time the ref­eree told her this was the last time.

Zo­lasko was now tir­ing hav­ing put ev­ery­thing into the first two as she took in deep breaths be­fore go­ing out for round three.

Dubois had noth­ing to lose so came out all guns blaz­ing. Zo­lasko looked to have slowed the pace down yet was still hav­ing suc­cess, but as they came to­gether Zo­lasko took a clean shot from Dubois and the ref­eree de­cided it war­ranted an eight count, which was frus­trat­ing es­pe­cially as Zo­lasko had caught Dubois with stronger, cleaner shots and the ref­eree had let them go.

With only a few se­conds left of the round they came to­gether again with Zo­lasko’s de­fence im­pec­ca­ble, yet out of nowhere the ref­eree counted eight again then pro­ceeded to stop the con­test.

The coaches in the cor­ner were gut­ted with only a few se­conds left, as Zo­lasko had put ev­ery­thing into the con­test and al­though she’d tired in the third she was not un­der any threat or looked to be in trou­ble.

A mag­nif­i­cent dis­play from the young MBBC girl was met with a lot of sup­port even if the end was ques­tion­able, but she still man­aged to pick up the sil­ver medal in the ju­nior fe­male un­der 60kg.

Next up was young Tommy Healy, hop­ing to avenge the poor de­ci­sion from the week be­fore against James Metcalfe, the same kid he met in the Three Na­tions fi­nal over in Rother­ham.

Healy was chomp­ing at the bit to put the score right as he felt he’d been robbed the week be­fore and as the bell rang Metcalfe came for­ward al­low­ing Healy to catch him with his right hook ev­ery time.

Healy even got some great punches off at close quar­ters too as Metcalfe was push­ing on, but Healy was clearly catch­ing with more shots on tar­get, just like the week­end be­fore.

Round one looked to be in the bag, with round two start­ing with Healy con­tin­u­ing to catch at will, mov­ing well on his feet and hit­ting his tar­get with ease.

Healy came back from round two and felt he’d al­ready done enough, but the coaches still en­cour­aged him to go out there and carry on as he were.

Al­though Healy took his foot off the pedal in the third, he still caught his op­po­nent with the cleaner shots and looked to have nailed it. As the bell rang Healy showed his emo­tions as he felt he’d re­versed the out­come from the pre­vi­ous week.

It wasn’t to be though, as some­how the de­ci­sion came back again in favour of Metcalfe, leav­ing Healy mor­ti­fied and the coaches had no ex­pla­na­tion for the re­sult as they be­lieved Healy had done more than enough.

Healy was up­set and dis­ap­pointed with the de­ci­sion af­ter his chance of rais­ing the cham­pion’s belt taken away from him af­ter an ex­cel­lent per­for­mance but be­ing the ma­ture boxer that he is he took it on the chin like a man and con­grat­u­lated his op­po­nent.

All in all a frus­trat­ing day for both MBBC box­ers, but the fact they had got to the fi­nal was a mas­sive achieve­ment and the ex­pe­ri­ence gained in such a con­test can only ben­e­fit them both in the long run.

Tommy Healy

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