DYNAMIC Heart of Portsmouth (HOP) duo Ollie Fenton and Harry Brown have become the city’s latest national boxing champions.
The pair served up sensational double success for their club at the Minor Schoolboy Championships in Manchester.
Fenton, nicknamed Fast Hands, defeated Hamer’s Amid Khan at 31kg with a display of increasing intensity to take the title.
Boxing out of a southpaw stance, Fenton used good footwork to put his opponent under pressure and control the centre of the ring.
That style was enough for him to take the national crown on points and spark wild celebrations.
It was a similar story for Brown at 35.5kg against Leigh’s Coan Gildart.
It was a tough take for Brown, nicknamed The Bomber, but his determination and ability to box to instruction saw him take a split decision verdict.
Their displays delighted the HOP coaching team featuring the likes of Paul Kapnisi, Brian Featherstone and fathers Colin Brown and Matt Fenton.
HOP coach Q Shillingford heaped praise on the boxers and believes it shows the GB Boxing Awards programme, which the pair have both graduated from, is reaping dividends.
Shillingford said: ‘I remember Harry Brown and Ollie Fenton when they first started at HOP over five years ago. They were doing the Boxing Awards and came through that programme.
‘To see them reach the top and win national titles is very rewarding.
‘The HOP junior coaching team have done a great job in preparing the boxers.
‘Paul Kapnisi and his team has trained and developed both boxers very well.
‘The club is very proud of the whole team and thank them for all their hard work.’
Meanwhile, there was last-stage heartache for Waterlooville’s Sonny Driscoll.
He saw Northside’s Luke Faulkner get the verdict in their 32.5kg final.
And Team Wiseman’s Liam Wiseman saw Hall Green’s Joe Collins get a disputed decision at 40kg.
Waterlooville coach, George Mackenzie, had no argument with the verdict of Driscoll’s final.
But he was still delighted to see his boxer battle his way through to the last stage.
And he believe the experience will make his charge stronger moving forward.
Mackenzie said: ‘It was a big occasion and Sonny never quite got going.
‘We’ve got no complaints about the outcome and the judging was perfect.
‘On a different day he would have won – because he is capable.
‘He’ll learn from the experience and be stronger for it, though.
‘We are extremely proud of what Sonny has achieved. It’s a privilege to have him in our gym.’