Alfie Holman and Charlie Keet are Heart of Portsmouth’s latest national boxing champions

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Heart of Portsmouth Boxing Club are celebrating their latest national successes.

The club had two winners at the English Schools Championships held in Oxfordshire.

Alfie Holman, 13, won the under-44kg class A title, beating Liam Freanley from Birkenhead Venture Boxing Club.

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And Charlie Keet took the under-36kg cadet championship title, beating Myles Cash from Newham Boxing Club.

Charlie Keet, left, and Alfie Holman.
Picture: Habibur RahmanCharlie Keet, left, and Alfie Holman.
Picture: Habibur Rahman
Charlie Keet, left, and Alfie Holman. Picture: Habibur Rahman

‘We’re very proud of them,’ said HoP head coach Q Shillingford. ‘They are national champions because they have shown great commitment and dedication.’

Holman has been with HoP since he was seven years old. This is his second national award inside a year, following on from his success in the MTX Global Lonsdale Box Cup.

He will now undertake assessments at Tamworth, in the midlands, in a bid to win selection for the England squad for the European Schools Championships which take place in Turkey in August.

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Shillingham has been chosen as the head coach of the England Schools team, and will take around 18 boys and girls for the 10-day tournament.

Heart of Portsmouth's English Schools champions Alfie Holman, left, and Charlie Keet. Also pictured are coaches George Smith, David Johnston and Jimmy Smith.
Picture: Habibur RahmanHeart of Portsmouth's English Schools champions Alfie Holman, left, and Charlie Keet. Also pictured are coaches George Smith, David Johnston and Jimmy Smith.
Picture: Habibur Rahman
Heart of Portsmouth's English Schools champions Alfie Holman, left, and Charlie Keet. Also pictured are coaches George Smith, David Johnston and Jimmy Smith. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Both Holman and Keet train twice a week at HoP on club nights. In addition, they have one-on-one training on Fridays and team sparring on Sundays. They will also do fitness training at home.

Shillingford was keen to praise the junior coaching team at his club - Dave Johnston, Georgie Smith, Lee Theobald and Jimmy Smith - who oversee around 70 children, including beginners.

HoP are no strangers to producing national champions, and have seen seven home-grown boxers progress to England squads.

‘Most boxing clubs would be delighted if they ever had one boxer go on to Team England in their entire history,’ said Shillingford. ‘We’ve had seven in 15 years.’