Eastgate Boxing Club coach Mick Bryant hailed his talented youngsters after they put on a knockout show on Friday evening.
Staged within a specially-erected marquee on the pitch of Bury Town’s Ram Meadow, 13 bouts, including two skills bouts, took place as a host of the Rougham club’s upcoming fighters dazzled in the ring.
Of those to shine, Zach Howard was the first to taste success in a close contest against Chelmsford’s Mitchell Chittock as the home fighter’s cleaner shots proved pivotal in the judges’ decision.
It was the same story for James Starie, nephew of former British super middleweight champion David, who showed glimpses of his uncle’s pedigree to overcome his much taller opponent, Southend’s Leon Dunlop.
There was also victory for Jimmy Fell over Mark Emmerson of Rayleigh, while the performance of the night went to the promising Matt Rose, who stopped Academy Luton’s Callum Cleary in the second round following a barrage of ferocious body shots.
The celebrations soon turned to disappointment though as both Sam Williams, against Lewis Meason from Chelmsford, and Ryan Day facing Chadwell’s George Hart, suffered narrow defeats as the judges’ decisions went against them.
“We suffered a couple of disappointing defeats, but overall it has been another great show,” said Bryant.
“There were some very promising performances from the likes of James Starie, Zach Howard and Matt Rose who are just a handful of our boxers to keep an eye on.
“Every year we bring through another crop of talented youngsters and they continue to impress, it is fantastic to see the next generation coming through.
“That is huge credit to the coaches we have at the club and the future is certainly extremely bright for us.”
Meanwhile, there was disappointment for Eastgate’s Jake Dykstra, who missed out on a chance to fight for an ABA national title after suffering defeat in his National Junior Championship semi-final encounter against Danny Barrett in Portsmouth at the weekend.
Facing his much taller opponent, Dykstra could not recover from a poor first round as Barrett’s greater reach proved decisive in claiming the judges’ decision, leaving the Eastgate fighter to reflect on missing out on the final at the last hurdle for the second successive year.
“Unfortunately Jake just had no answer for the reach and speed of his taller opponent,” added Bryant.
“He responded well in the second and third rounds, but it just proved not enough and the other lad deservedly got the decision.
“However, Jake has had another good season and we will just come back and look to go again next year.”