Holifield maintains Islington Boxing Club’s gold medal record at Haringey Box Cup

Islington BC's Rachel Holifield with her gold medal at the Haringey Box Cup

Islington BC's Rachel Holifield with her gold medal at the Haringey Box Cup - Credit: Archant

Islington BC’s Rachel Holifield claimed her first honour in amateur boxing with a gold medal at the prestigious Haringey Box Cup.

Holifield – who recently returned from a year on the sidelines due to two separate injuries – outpointed Kelly Reynolds (Jersey Leonies ABC) in the Class C Under-65kg final on Sunday.

She took the Alexandra Palace bout at less than 24 hours’ notice after Reynolds had failed to make the weight in her original category – and preserved Islington’s proud record of winning at least one gold medal at each Box Cup tournament.

The pair began by exchanging punches in the centre of the ring before Holifield was caught by a strong right shot that sparked her into action.

Throwing lefts and rights in the second round, she forced Reynolds onto the back foot and gradually wore her down, landing a straight right at the start of the third and maintaining control to secure victory.

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It looked as if the Islington boxer’s medal chances had disappeared on Saturday when she was edged out by the unbeaten Jody Cunningham (Bredbury & Stockport ABC) in the Class C Under-64kg semi-finals.

Cunningham was the more aggressive of the pair and, although Holifield impressed with her right-hand double jab, it was not enough to swing a split decision away from her rival, who went on to take the gold medal.

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Islington’s other two Box Cup entrants also suffered defeats at the semi-final stages, with Reece Shagourie going out against Bryce Goodridge (Basingstoke ABC) in the elite Under-81kg category.

Southpaw Shagourie, who had also been out for a year with injuries, lost on a tight points verdict the last time he encountered Goodridge – and it was a similar story on Saturday.

The Islington fighter was forced to overreach to land his shots against a tall, awkward opponent, and the unanimous decision went in Goodridge’s favour.

Tyrane Wynter controlled periods of his youth Under-56kg semi-final contest against James Lee (Rumbles ABC), putting his opponent on the back foot.

However, Lee used his height and reach advantage to score shots through the Islington youngster’s high guard and luck was not on Wynter’s side as a unanimous decision went against him.

Meanwhile, Islington debutant William Nantu, 11, lost against M McDonagh (Finchley ABC) in a 34kg contest on the Haringey ABC community day show.

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