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Knockout success for Thames Valley Boxing Club



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Thames Valley Boxing Club welcomed a host of brave challengers to Rumble at the Racecourse II on Saturday, 21st May.

Before the first bout, there was a ten bell tribute to Mel Corrigan and Bob Cooke, two beloved members of the boxing community who recently passed away.

The action commenced with three skills bouts. There were impressive performances from Thames Valley boxers Ollie Prouting, Austin Duncan and Tane Newton-Cook.

Austin Duncan TVABC vs S.Lathbury Emerald.
Austin Duncan TVABC vs S.Lathbury Emerald.
Ollie Prouting TVABC vs J Smith High Wycombe.
Ollie Prouting TVABC vs J Smith High Wycombe.
Austin Duncan TVABC vs S.Lathbury Emerald.
Austin Duncan TVABC vs S.Lathbury Emerald.
Tane Newton-Cook TVABC vs Alfie Stebbings Hemel Warriors
Tane Newton-Cook TVABC vs Alfie Stebbings Hemel Warriors

The fourth fight of the night was a youth bout featuring TVABC's Ashton Duncan against Noah Lee of St Ives.

After a strong start from his opponent, Duncan grew into the fight and some sharp combinations drew vocal support from a packed crowd.

The fight went the distance and, much to the delight of the home support, Duncan was awarded a split decision win.

Duncan was later awarded the Mick Sutton Trophy for the best junior boxer of the night.

Ashton Duncan TVABC vs Noah Lee St Ives.
Ashton Duncan TVABC vs Noah Lee St Ives.
Ashton Duncan TVABC vs Noah Lee St Ives.
Ashton Duncan TVABC vs Noah Lee St Ives.

The first senior bout saw Thames Valley's Omar Sheikh take on Emerald's Thanil Sully.

Sheikh was surprised by a frenetic opening minute, Sully taking the centre of the ring and unloading a barrage of fast paced shots.

Unphased, Sheikh fought back, landing a series of well judged combinations to put his opponent on the back foot.

The Emerald man survived two counts in the second round but, after more pressure from Sheikh, the referee stopped the fight.

Sheikh donned a tee-shirt with a picture of Mel Corrigan in a touching tribute to the man affectionately known as Midnight Mel, who he said "helped me a lot, he means a lot to me, that was for him."

Reflecting on the fight, Sheikh said "His start was unexpected, I thought he was going to keep up that pace, but I remained composed and tucked up nice and tight and let him know that I wasn't going to take a step back."

Sheikh's performance earned him the Berkshire Youth Trophy, awarded to the best Berkshire boxer of the night.

Omar Sheikh TVABC vs Thani Sully.
Omar Sheikh TVABC vs Thani Sully.
Omar Sheikh with his Berkshire Boxer of the Night trophy.
Omar Sheikh with his Berkshire Boxer of the Night trophy.

The next fight was between Xian Blackman Price and Harley Whitwell. Whitwell, a decade younger than her opponent, controlled most of the bout and was awarded the win thanks to a unanimous judges decision.

At the interval, Danny Ward, one of Thames Valley's coaches, was awarded Clubman of the Year.

After a successful auction, Thames Valley's Ivan Beynon entered the ring to face Woking's Sam Shiek.

After a slow start, Beynon finished the stronger - but had left himself too much to do, the fight went to the judges who awarded Shiek the win via split decision.

Ivan Beynon vs Sarin Shiek.
Ivan Beynon vs Sarin Shiek.

Connor Stafford fought Brandon May of Blackbird Leys in the next bout.

Stafford dominated the first round, landing some powerful left hands.

In the second round, Stafford dropped his hands and, full of confidence, danced around the ring.

May responded well, though, and got in close numerous times to land some good shots to the body.

There was a dramatic end to the final round as both fighters exchanged blows before Stafford was awarded the win by split decision.

Connor Stafford vs Brandon May.
Connor Stafford vs Brandon May.

Thames Valley's Aaron Duncan took on Stevenage's Oliver Culling in one of the fights of the night.

The fight ebbed and flowed, Culling starting the better but Duncan responding well, both fighters landing some impressive punches.

A split decision ruled in favour of Culling, much to the dismay of Duncan's supporters.

Duncan's spirited performance saw him deservedly awarded the Jonny Bremner Trophy, given to the fighter who displayed the most heart and courage on the night.

Aaron Duncan vs Oliver Culling.
Aaron Duncan vs Oliver Culling.

Chris Ockwell, at 35 the oldest fighter on the card, lost a split decision contest to Jack Bishops' Thomas Bennett.

Chris Ockwell vs Thomas Bennett.
Chris Ockwell vs Thomas Bennett.

The penultimate bout went the way of Stevenage's Jacob Smiles, who edged out Thames Valley's Lucus Marino thanks to another split decision.

Caulay Suttie lost out in the twelfth and final fight of an action packed night following a unanimous decision in his opponents favour.

Suttie was outboxed for much of the bout and a more assured final round proved too little, too late.

Cauulay Suttie.
Cauulay Suttie.

It was a fantastic night of boxing, a testament to the people of Thames Valley ABC and a fitting tribute to Mel Corrigan and Bob Cooke.

Paul Cooke is already planning his next events - at the Waterside Centre in October and next year's Rumble at the Racecourse III.

In the words of Omar Sheikh: "Run it back - let's do it all again."



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