ENGLAND national boxing coach Mick Gannon praised Sudbury Amateur Boxing Club for hosting a wonderful evening of high-quality boxing as the ABA men’s elite semi-finals came to Suffolk for the first time since the mid-70s, writes Martin Webb.
Sudbury Sports Centre witnessed 10 quality championship bouts on Saturday night in front of a good crowd that included Gannon and Suffolk’s former world title challenger David Starie.
The evening opened with a showcase bout between Sudbury’s own Zak Lawson and Southend boxer Albie Scopes and fighting in the junior 39kg class, Lawson lost 10-2.
England national coach Gannon was in attendance running his eye over the talent on display and praised Sudbury for the way they put on the event.
“I was extremely impressed with the organisation of these prestigious championships by host club Sudbury ABC and they should be congratulated for all their efforts to deliver a cracking night’s entertainment,” he said.
“Stand-out performer for me was Brentwood’s Danny Dignum. If he continues in this form he has every chance to lift his first national elite title next month.”
Gannon was referring to the only Eastern Counties-based boxer to progress to the finals, Danny Dignum from Brentwood ABC, who featured in the bout of the night.
Amid a great atmosphere, southpaw Dignum faced the challenge of muscular Aaron Morgan from Islington ABC in a highly technical middleweight pairing.
Dignum’s straight left cross proved effective as he won each round fairly, consistently with scores of 8-4, 9-5 and 10-7 to take an overall 27-16 points win in a bout that was a superb advert for amateur boxing.
Dignum hopes to emulate his brother John, who won the ABA middleweight crown in 2011 as he now moves to the finals at York Hall, Bethnal Green in May.
At light heavyweight, reigning ABA champion Sam Pomphrey from Bristol came across a determined Kirk Garvey from London.
Southpaw Garvey kept up a solid work-rate throughout to take his place in the final after racking up a 22-11 scoreline.
A delighted Garvey received his winner’s medal, as did all the boxers on the night, from former world title challenger, and guest of honour, Starie.
Last year’s finalist and Garvey’s Earlsfield ABC clubmate, Louis Adolphe, booked his place in the final with a convincing 22-4 points win over Howard hart from Mayflower ABC.
A rapier-like jab from Adolphe saw him take the opening round 6-1 and he never looked back from there in the light welterweight category.
Two very powerful performances at welter and light middleweight saw the winners not required to go into the third round. Tamuka Muchapowda from Reading ABC forced three standing eight counts on Jack Healy from Chadwell St Mary ABC to force a referee’s intervention in the second round and Kelvin Fawaz, from London’s All Stars ABC, dished out enough punishment in the first six minutes of his bout with Wes Smith of Launceston ABC, to bring about a corner retirement.
Earlier in the evening Suffolk county councillor Peter Beer presented a £6,000 cheque to Sudbury ABC, which will help fund an urgent repair required to the club’s gym roof.