Birmingham-held inaugural University Box Cup is hailed a success

May 2, 2019 | by Matt Halfpenny


The inaugural University Box Cup 2019 – the first tournament of its kind – took place at Birmingham University Sports Centre at the weekend (27th and 28th April) to much acclaim.

Organised by the Pat Benson Boxing Academy (PBBA) in conjunction with The University of Birmingham Boxing Club and with funding support Birmingham Sport and Physical Activity Partnership, the event was attended by university teams from all over the UK and Ireland.

The tournament has been created to satisfy the ever-expanding university and college representation within the England Boxing framework.

It came together after a conversation between Pat Benson and England Boxing’s Midlands Club Support Officer Mick Maguire more than a year ago, where they first muted the idea of bringing a Box Cup to Birmingham.

With PBBA having a long-standing relationship with The University of Birmingham Boxing Club – helping create it back in 2013 – it was decided that basing an event in England’s second city around universities had considerable potential.

“I would personally like to commend the PBBA staff who alongside dedicate their time at the club to tackling some very serious community issues within Birmingham, from mental health to domestic violence, youth poverty and gang affiliation, have been instrumental in helping prepare for this event.

“Our volunteers and board of trustees have been incredibly important to our organisation in general and to the event taking place, as have the staff of University of Birmingham in for their support throughout the organisation and planning stages.

“Testament must go to the students of the University of Birmingham Boxing Club, who have been incredibly committed to the cause, while we’ve also been delighted to welcome Aston University on board this year as a partner club, and they had competitors across the two day event also.

“It was great to see an incredible assembly of teams from across the UK and Ireland – and this was a just reward for the monumental efforts of our staff and volunteers.

“I would like to take the opportunity to commend England Boxing and Midlands Club Support Officer Mick Maguire, who has helped tremendously throughout this process, and lastly our sincere gratitude goes to the officials who ensured the competition ran very smoothly and in line with the rules and regulations of England Boxing.”

The hope is that University Box Cup will now become a calendar event within the competition programme and will be staged in Birmingham each year.

Malcolm Clemson, a Midlands Referees and Judges’ Representative, said: “The venue at the University of Birmingham was outstanding and easily worthy of holding national finals.

“The organisation was tremendous and any issues during the competition were overcome by the events team who had obviously put a great deal of effort and time into the planning of this event.

Lots of Universities entered teams and the standard of competition was very good. The event was a fantastic achievement and I hope they continue this event as this has shown that a small dedicated team can achieve great things.”

Pictured are the Loughborough University Boxing Team and Othiman Said, of Hereford, with his gold Medal.