St Gerards young guns pack a punch

Flynn Wallis with St Gerards duo Jon Mills and Gerry Lavelle
Flynn Wallis with St Gerards duo Jon Mills and Gerry Lavelle

St Gerards Boxing club travelled to Chelmsford with two of their young prospects who were on the bill in Brentwood Boxing Club’s open boxing show.

Both the Chichester club’s boxers were up against home opposition, so had their work cut out.

First up was 13-year-old Flynn Wallis, a pupil at Chichester High School who was making his debut.

Flynn weighed in at 42kg and was facing 14-year-old Charlie Woodruff from the host club, who was the same weight and also a debutant.

St Gerards coach Jon Mills said: “We agreed on a skills bout before the competition, but really it was a full-on contest.

“The first round was a humdinger with both lads giving it their all. Flynn definitely came out on top and Charlie wasn’t looking too happy.

“The second was just as good with Flynn coming across with some very experienced slips and dips, countering with left uppercut/hooks. Charlie was still chasing him down big-time but was looking frustrated.

“The last round saw Charlie chasing again with some excellent footwork and defensive kills from Flynn, who was in his element and partied accordingly with the last flurry of shots catching Charlie at full pelt.

“The crowd absolutely loved this display from two young warriors and there was rapturous applause for both and both had their hands raised in celebration of their efforts. It’s definitely a match-up for the future.”

Next up for St Gerards was Alfie Wilson, a 14-year-old weighing in at 52kg. The Midhurst Rother College pupil was up against the Brentwood club’s Joe Gowely, of the same age and weight.

This was a junior contest over three half-minute rounds and was another cracker for the crowd, who were very partisan in support of Joe.

Coach Jon Mills said: “Alfie was a little fazed by the noise for Joe, who came gunning for him in the first round. Alfie stayed in touch with the game, but Joe probably did the most work.

“In the second round Alfie found his feet and started catching Joe at will. As Joe still tried to rush forward, Alfie neatly side-stepped the onslaught with clipping right hands. It was a close round.

“In the third and final round Alfie Wilson found his footing with a dazzling display of back-foot boxing, catching Joe with many and most of the cleaner shots, making him a clear winner of this round.

They gave the decision to Joe unanimously and many of the crowd groaned at this but young Alfie took it on the chin and said ‘I will be back’.”

Last weekend St Gerards’ 18-year-old prospect Abigail Wawman was attending her first England team session on the talent pathway scheme, while 15-year-old clubmate Holly Heffron attended her fifth session on the same scheme.

Coach Mills said: “Our female boxers are a step ahead of the game, leading the way forward for female boxing, including Abi’s older sister Katie Wawman, the current Taekwondo International federation British champion.”

Anyone wishing to sponsor St Gerards or one of their boxers can call Gerry Lavelle on 01243 251248 or call at the club’s sessions, held at Swanfield Community Centre, Chichester, on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6pm to 8pm.