Top quality sparring for young Phoenix boxers
‘ This trip will have enhanced the chances at the championships of all the boys who were in attendance and we’re really looking forward to the rest of the season’
LOCHABER Phoenix Boxing Club continued with preparations for the various upcoming national championships by taking six of their boxers to Sheffield and Motherwell last weekend as they spent three days sparring with top quality opponents.
The Lochaber boxers who made the trip were 10-year- old Josh Dieguno, Max Derbenovs, 12, Cameron Whyte, 14, Robert MacDonald, 15, Ross McConnell, 15, and Shaun Wallace, 16.
Friday and Saturday were spent at the world famous Ingle gym, home of Prince Nadeem Hamed, Johnny Nelson and current world welterweight champion Kell Brook, among others.
While the boxers from both clubs spent hours each day trying to knock lumps out of each other, between rounds and before and after training the time was spent gaining new friends.
Former WBC light-welterweight champion of the world Junior Witter was one of the head amateur coaches at the Ingle gym so the boys got to meet him and the man who started the ball rolling with what is commonly held to be a boxing institution, Brendan Ingle.
Now in his seventies, Brendan is still in the gym every day of the week watching the amateur and professional boxers training.
Indeed, Lochaber’s Cameron Whyte was given a huge accolade by this legend of the sport when he urged everyone of the gym to give Cameron a round of applause after a particularly impressive round of sparring.
Sunday saw Lochaber Phoenix back in Scotland, at the Kier Hardie gym in Motherwell, where boxers from the host club and Irvine Vineburgh and Barrhead were also present to engage in a spirited sparring session.
Club coach Charlie Anderson was delighted with the progress and attitude shown by the local boxers over the course of the weekend saying: ‘We really wanted the boys to get some rounds in the bank while we were away to help with sharpness and stamina and also to give the less experienced boxers a look at how to conduct yourself when you are competing away from home and everything that going to a championship entails.
‘ We were delighted with the application of all the boys and they really were a credit to themselves. This trip will have enhanced the chances at the championships of all the boys who were in attendance and we’re really looking forward to the rest of the season.’
Young Lochaber boxers are, back row, left to right, Robert MacDonald, Cameron Whyte, Shaun Wallace and, far right, Ross MacConnell; and, front row, left to right, Max Derbenovs and Josh Dieguno with, back row, second from right, Junior Witter, who has held multiple light-welterweight championships including the World Boxing Council title from 2006 to 2008.