Islington Boxing Club pair through to national finals

Islington BC pair Scott Smart (left) and Sherif Musah

Islington BC pair Scott Smart (left) and Sherif Musah - Credit: Archant

Islington BC duo Sherif Musah and Scott Smart are just one step away from becoming national champions after their impressive victories last weekend.

Light-heavyweight Musah and flyweight Smart will be contesting their respective finals in the National Development Championships on Sunday at Houghton-le-Spring, Tyne and Wear.

The Hazellville Road club had been hoping to field a trio of finalists this weekend – but club captain Jeff Ofori was edged out on a split decision in his semi-final.

Islington BC chairman Lenny Hagland told the Gazette: “Everyone at the club wishes both boxers the very best of luck.

“We all know how hard they have worked to get this far and although it is a great achievement getting to a national final, we hope both can go on and win on Sunday.”

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Musah produced his best performance of the tournament to overcome old adversary John Waterman (Woking BC) in the Class B Under-81kg semi-final on the Isle of Sheppey.

Each fighter had won one of their two previous meetings, but this time it was Musah who jabbed effectively throughout the four rounds, catching his opponent with some classy uppercuts and hook combinations to take a unanimous decision.

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Musah will now face Ciaran Nelson (Sefton) in his final, while Smart is up against Connor Raine (Shildon) after overcoming Rashid Hashemi (Southampton) in the Class A Under-52kg semi-final.

Smart started well, dominating the centre of the ring and landed a string of eye-catching left hands and right hooks before increasing his work-rate in the second round.

Hashemi did attempt to mount a comeback in the final round, but he was outboxed by the fleet-footed Islington fighter, who went on to clinch a unanimous verdict.

Ofori, contesting the Class B under-64kg semi-final, began slowly against Andrew Adenas (Heart of Portsmouth), whose volume of punches earned him a lead in the first two rounds.

The Islington man did recover and landed more solid blows in the latter stages, but Adenas continued working hard and did enough to secure a majority decision.

Meanwhile, Islington’s Cherrelle Brown was named best boxer of the night on her debut for England in Saturday’s 8-2 victory over Denmark.

The 28-year-old, who defeated Danish opponent Camilla Skov Jensen by a 3-0 scoreline, said: “I got a bit emotional during the playing of the national anthem and was understandably a bit nervous.

“But I was determined to box well and give everything for my country.”

n Islington BC welterweight Kenyon ‘Sherman’ Reid continued his improvement with a points win on a St Pancras ABC show at the Camden Irish Centre.

Reid gave away height and reach to Senai Woldu from the home club, but worked well on the inside to cause problems for his opponent in the first round.

Woldu improved in the second round, landing a number of straight shots, but the Islington fighter responded in kind and did enough in a tight final round to take a unanimous decision.

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