Boxing: Taylor boxes clever to win midlands title
POWER puncher Liam Taylor took no prisoners as he was crowned Midlands ABA Schoolboy champion.
The 13-year-old from Tom Lowe's Kidsgrove stable has made it through to the national pre-quarter-finals by completing a demolition job in Telford.
Taylor went all guns blazing against Warrington's Muhammed Taler and came out as winner with a unanimous verdict.
Coach Lowe hopes the teenager will now continue to throw his weight around as he takes on the best young guns in Nottingham this weekend.
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Lowe said: "We knew Liam was going to be up against a lad with a lot of experience, but I thought if the worst came to the worst we would throw the towel in.
"But he boxed really well and comfortably won the bout.
"He's the sort of boxer that goes forward at each opportunity and every punch he throws he throws with all his might.
"He caught him a couple of times and did a lot of damage. He's only 13, but his strength is already very good.
"The competition will get tougher with each round, but hopefully he can keep it going."
It was the end of the journey, however, for two of Taylor's club-mates, Mitchell Lowe, aged 12, and Barney Maloney, aged 14.
Maloney had beaten Ryan Talwar in Donington seven days previously, but was made to pay for conceding a penalty point in the Midlands final – losing by one point.
Mitchell Lowe lost on a majority verdict against Oliver Lee, but his previous showings had already given enough to suggest a bright future for the youngster.
Coach Lowe, Mitchell's dad, said: "The occasion got to Mitchell a bit, but he's only just 12 and it was a great experience for him."
Greg Lunt and Ismail Qamar showed their quick hands as they won Midlands Royal Navy Schools titles.
Skilful displays from the Stoke YMCA Boxing Club pair in Telford mean they will now progress through to the national quarter-finals.
Lunt, aged 12, was the youngest in the 46 to 48 kg class but, in his first year in the competition, he out-boxed mature Terry Smith (Ludlow).
He was patient as he fielded Smith's attacks before exploiting those openings with fast hand speed and a knack of altering his pace to break his opponent's rhythm.
Smith kept trying to hold, but Lunt was too quick on his feet and won the bout unanimously.
Qamar, in the 42 to 44kg, had a cracking bout against Louis Martin (Telford and Wrekin) in a frenetic encounter.
Both boxers got the crowd on their feet as they fought at an incredible pace before Qamar took over in the second round with some ferocious combinations.
He kept up his pressure in the third and won on a unanimous verdict.
Stoke coach Dave Buxton said: "These boys are through to the national quarters now and they can go all the way.
"They are already proving to be top class boxers at such a young age."