Young boxers go for Southern Counties crown

Heart of Portsmouth's Joe Hunt
Heart of Portsmouth's Joe Hunt
Danny Couzens. Picture: Natalie Mayhew, Butterfly Boxing

Couzens weighs up future after brave defeat

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Southern Counties glory is up for grabs this weekend in the next round of the National Schoolboys’ Championships.

The latest stage of the competition follows on from the inter-county section, which was successfully held at Victory ABC in Fareham last Saturday.

That saw a host of talents from across the area pick up wins on a bumper show at Hill Park Working Men’s Club.

Moneyfields enjoyed success, with Connor Whittaker delivering a quick-fire win over Sheerness fighter Jay Kisnorbo.

Whittaker stuck to his plan to work the body and then switch to the head of his taller opponent.

That brought a count after 20 seconds, and the contest was waved off moments later after another Whittaker onslaught.

Whittaker now has a tough opponent in Sporting Ring’s Ely Saunders, and has been readying himself for that battle with sparring at London big-guns Repton and West Ham.

His club-mate Harry Blick was unfortunate to lose to Sheerness’ Liam Brum in what proved to be a cracking battle.

Brady Samways will be boxing in Farnham tomorrow, though, after gaining a bye through to the last stage.

He will be joined by Heart of Portsmouth boxer Sid Williams, who is fired up for the task of meeting Guildford’s England international Luke Thompson.

National Award graduates Joe Hunt and Robbie Patterson are both still involved in the competition, too.

Hunt emerged victorious from his meeting with Swales’ Dave Burk, while Patterson was given a bye and meets Woking’s Joe West in Farnham.

Jack Featherstone is now a national quarter-finalist after recording success last weekend and being given a bye tomorrow.

The success of the boxers played a big part in Hampshire recording an 8-7 win over Kent on a successful day for the county.

They were well supported by a host of Victory boxers, with the club picking up five wins as well as a skills bout.

Fast-developing Albie Higgon was one of the winners following his recent schoolboys success.

The 13-year-old took a unanimous decision over Sweet Science’s Kieran Green.

Higgon picked up his club’s Market House Tavern-sponsored best boxer award for 2009-10, and now also has a schoolboys bye tomorrow at 49kg.

Millie Morgan’s hurtling progress continued as she stopped Moneyfields’ Ebonie Jones.

Despite facing a strong opponent, Morgan showed she is taking on board her training as she stepped in with her punches to pick up a second-round success.

Blake Downes (39kg) and Sam Blainey (70kg) were other winners, while there was success for senior Jake Taylor, who had a quick victory against Yeovil’s Elliott Buckling.

Alex Gill also shone in a skills bout with Leigh Park’s Alex Hamson.

Victory coach Leigh Medway was delighted with the success of his show and the effort of his boxers.

He said: ‘Both the coaches and boxers work hard here and put in a lot of hours each week.

‘It was a great afternoon of boxing and a packed house.

‘It was good to see Hampshire come out on top and the winners go forward.

‘I was really impressed with the willingness of our club’s boxers to learn as well.

‘The day was worth all the hard work everyone put into it.’

Meanwhile, Heart of Portsmouth pair Henry Eley and Tom Giles are in action in Southampton tonight. Giles will be making his HOP debut.