Silvers for Barry and Endean at BUSC Championships
James Connor lauded Omar Barry and Tom Endean after their efforts at the British Universities and College Sports Boxing Championships last weekend.
The Gym01 & University of Portsmouth Boxing Club pair both scooped silver medals in the 64kg weight division in Class A and Class B categories respectively.
Yaseen Abdou and Matthew Enubuje also reached the semi-finals at 84kg and 69kg.
Barry fought three times in as many days at Staffordshire University.
Following two impressive wins against defending champion Warren Gray and Qasim Kayani, he faced London Metropolitan University’s Slavisa Gegic in the final.
Both fighters were undefeated heading into the bout and battled out an enthralling contest.
Although Barry rocked his opponent, his copybook was blotted as Gegic was awarded a unanimous decision victory.
But Connor was delighted with his charge’s performance and expects the pair to meet again in the near future.
‘Omar had the group of death,’ said Gym01 & The University of Portsmouth Boxing Club’s head coach.
‘His first opponent was last year’s champion and he got into a bit of a war in the first round, which he didn’t need to do.
‘In his semi-final, he then stopped a very decent opponent.
‘It set up a final bout against another undefeated fighter. It was an inevitable match that was going to happen.
‘The fight was really close, one of the best I’ve ever watched from the corner.
‘We felt it could have gone our way but it was a close fight and we can’t have any complaints with the decision.
‘They will both meet in championships again – they’re both too good to avoid each other.
‘Omar rocked every single lad he was in with. Gegic said afterwards it’s the only time he’s almost been dropped, so he felt Omar’s power.
‘Nevertheless, he took the defeat well. He realised it’s amateur boxing and you’re lucky if you have a 50/50 record never mind nine wins from nine fights.
‘Omar wants more fights like that. He wants to challenge himself and he’s faced some very decent boxers, which is what he needs.’
Endean lost to Nottingham Trent University’s Callum Milner in the final of the 64kg Class B category via unanimous decision.
Connor admitted his fighter was up against it and saluted the steely attitude Endean displayed.
The coach added: ‘Tom boxed his heart out. He came up against a strong opponent and he’s obviously upset not to win.
‘But we were all happy with the effort he put in. He really couldn’t have done anything else.’