How the England Boxing Talent Programme has made history in 2018
December 27, 2018 | by Matt Halfpenny
It’s been a truly remarkable 2018 for the England Boxing Talent Programme.
Charged with bringing home a record haul of medals from major tournaments, the team delivered on that target in some style, clinching 12 golds, 9 silvers and 13 bronzes for a total of 34.
And, if you care to count the four medals won by England Boxers as part of the Great Britain team at October’s Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, the number rises to an even more impressive 38.
That incredible tally has been made possible not just by the unstinting dedication of some very talented young amateur boxers, but also a team of devoted coaches, headed up by Mick Driscoll and Amanda Coulson.
No strangers to top-class boxing themselves – both were successful boxers in their own right – the pair have put together a rigorous and finely-tuned programme that has left no stone unturned in the quest to secure ongoing success.
The excellent progress of the Talent Programme is something England Boxing’s Head of Talent and Competitions, David Thorley, is proud of, not just because some of those boxers could well go on to compete at a future Olympic Games, but also because of the legacy they are leaving for the next generation.
“We’re delighted by what has been achieved this year because we know it’s not easy to keep raising the bar, especially when it means breaking records to do so,” he said.
“It’s really pleasing to see that we’re getting results across a range of weight categories and, while we can get better in some, there is a good spread of success.
“Perhaps the most significant progress, however, is the fact that, for the first time, there was a 50 per cent spilt between the medals won by males and females, showing the great strides we have made in women’s boxing at elite level.
“Hopefully, our upward curve will continue next year. We know to do so will be tough, as all the other countries are striving just as hard to make improvements, but we continue to be ambitious and aim high.”
There were 144 different boxers who represented England this year, with each of them sent a commemorative vest as a means of thanks.
A total of 95 different individual clubs have provided boxers, illustrating the strength in depth of talent all around the country.
Thorley added: “I would like to say a big thank you to all the clubs for all their hard work in coaching and developing the talent that goes on to make the step up to international level.
“Without their long-term efforts, we would not see the number of major champions we do emerging from boxing gyms across England.”
Check back tomorrow to see who makes our list of the top five talent achievements of 2018.
To see the dates for the 2019 Talent Development Camps, click here.