In-form Islington boxer secures his first London title

Jeff Ofori

Jeff Ofori - Credit: Archant

Jeff Ofori emerged as Islington BC’s sole survivor in the senior ABA novice championships after winning his first London title on points.

The ever-improving Ofori overwhelmed opponent J Suares (Fitzroy Lodge) in Sunday’s Class A Under-63.5kg final, giving him a standing eight count in both the second and third rounds.

Ofori triumphed by unanimous decision – but he was the only winner among the eight-strong Islington contingent in the London finals, held at the TA Centre, Grove Park.

However, Sherif Musah, who lost the Class A Under-86kg final on a majority points verdict could yet be reinstated after a formal complaint was issued to the London ABA about the eligibility of his opponent, E Simukonis (TA Army).

Whatever the outcome, there will be no reprieve for the other Islington finalists, most of whom were beaten by unanimous decision.

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Scott Smart never really found his rhythm against C Marsden (Earlsfield) – who held an imposing height advantage of seven inches – in the Class A Under-51kg final.

It was a similar story for Troy Smart, who was also up against a taller opponent (East London Boxing Academy’s A Khan) in the Under-54kg final and was repeatedly picked off by fast jabs, left and rights.

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But Dujon Semper-Hughes, who used his long-range shots to good effect and upset the rhythm of opponent J Taylor (Fisher), was unlucky to lose the Class B Under-60kg final.

Enrico Mullings was well beaten in the Class B under-71kg final, where he failed to match the work-rate of opponent J Bellamy (Fitzroy Lodge) over the four rounds.

However, Islington’s senior club captain Jermaine Kelly put up a gutsy display in the Class B Under-86kg final, matching A Yarde (Omnibus) blow for blow, only to be eliminated by a bleeding nose that prompted the referee to stop the contest on the ringside doctor’s advice.

The eighth Islington representative, Jordan Joseph, was defeated on a unanimous decision by C Richards (Palmers BA) in the Class A Under-81kg semi-final on Saturday.

Islington boxer Patrick McCarthy overcame the host club’s Kurtis Preedy in a contest that won the ‘fight of the night’ award at Hayes ABC’s open show.

McCarthy forced a standing eight count in the second round and superior strength and fitness saw him to victory as the pair went toe-to-toe in the closing stages.

On the same show, Islington’s Neh Thomas recovered from a slow start, picking off opponent Saud Mohammed (Northolt) with clean jabs to win a majority points decision.

Islington’s Jack Sinnott lost out on a majority decision to his more experienced opponent, home boxer Kerim Agius, on the Dagenham ABC show.

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