Proud Gym 01 coach hails super six

The super six with their medals at the King of the Ring Box Cup in Sweden

James Connor saluted his Gym 01 & University of Portsmouth Boxing Club charges after they displayed their talent in a prestigious European tournament.

The six amateurs all clinched medals in the King Of The Ring Box Cup in Boras, Sweden.

Tom Endean, Jack Gisby and Omar Barry

Omar Barry, Alan Rastelli and Michael Stones won gold in their respective divisions, while Ryan Rodriguez, Tom Endean and Jack Gisby all claimed silver.

Head coach Connor spoke of his pride after his fighters’ performances.

He was expecting a strong showing from his troops in the competition that attracted more than 400 boxers from across Europe.

But Connor did not predict all of six would scoop medals.

I expected to bring home a couple of medals. However, to win six out of six was just something else

James Connor

He said: ‘We’ve been before and only won a few medals in previous years.

‘As a team, we tend to get away quite a lot – we were in Miami earlier this year for a team match.

‘I used to enjoy going abroad myself to compete and I want the lads to have the same opportunities.

‘With the team we have got, I expected to bring home a couple of medals.

‘However, to win six out of six was just something else.

‘Everyone’s performances throughout the tournament were really good.

‘I couldn’t have asked for any of them to have boxed any better.’

In the 64kg category, Barry met team-mate Endean in the final.

Although it was tough for the pair, they remained professional.

The unbeaten Barry showed his class and picked up a third-round stoppage victory.

Rastelli, competing in the 91kg division, stopped all three of his opponents on the way to glory.

Meanwhile, Stones won his final via unanimous decision in the 69kg category.

There were also silver medals for Gisby and Rodriguez in the 60kg and 50kg weight classes respectively.

Gisby out-landed his opponent in his final but got hit with several big shots and lost on the scorecards.

Rodriguez also fought gamely and was unlucky not to get the nod from the judges.

Connor believes his charges could have easily returned with a clean sweep of gold medals.

He added: ‘A couple of results on another day could have gone our way and we would have ended up with five or six golds. Regardless, they all boxed really well.

‘We have bouts every weekend and that is starting to show.

‘They have got the experience and are now starting to produce the goods.

‘There is a really positive atmosphere in the gym now and we always come to win.

‘Our recent results have been fantastic and we are building a really solid team.

‘Anyone who fights us knows they are going to have a hard bout.’

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