Group of young boxers at Keir Hardie ABC “is best in a decade” says coach

Some of the talented crop of youngsters who are hitting the heights as members of Keir Hardie Amateur Boxing Club in Newarthill
Some of the talented crop of youngsters who are hitting the heights as members of Keir Hardie Amateur Boxing Club in Newarthill

Keir Hardie Amateur Boxing Club members were on gold winning form recently as their young fighters bagged no less than 12 gold medals and a silver over the course of three tournaments in a four-week period.

Cameron Sleith (12), from New Stevenson led the way for the Newarthill club as he won gold at the Scottish Schoolboy Intermediate, Western District and the Scottish National Championships.

Keir Hardie ABC head coach Barry Clark told the Times and Speaker: “Cameron is a great trainer and a great wee listener for a boy his age.

“His fitness is certainly one of his strongest attributes. He is in the gym five nights a week for at least an hour each time.”

Cameron’s magnificent achievement was all but matched by fellow Keir Hardie members Evan Cain (11), Lewis Marshall (11) and Max Sleith (10), as all three lads secured gold in both Western District and National Championships.

Anthony Carroll (13) and Will Porter (15) finished off the gold medal haul at the Western Districts and young Jensen McCappin (10) gained silver.

Last but by no means least was Kai Meechan (10), as he won Scottish minor 28k gold in his first competition.

Barry spoke of his pride at how well all the young boxers were doing.

He added: “This was an impressive display by all these kids over three to four weeks, not only showing discipline in making their respective weights, but focussing on what they had to do.

“This was the first tournaments for most of these young boxers and all the coaching staff at our club were extremely proud of how they conducted themselves, competed and how they coped with everything thrown at them.

“Also to come away with the amount of medals as they did just rounded everything off perfectly.

“I’ve been at this club for 10 years and the depth of young talent we have just now is as good as it’s ever been.

“They are all round about the same age and they are all good.”

Barry also revealed the established ring stars who the young fighters look up to the most.

He said: “Josh Taylor (an Edinburgh-born former Commonwealth Games light-welterweight gold medallist who turned pro in 2015) is the one they admire the most.

“And then there’s this club’s established senior fighters Aqeel Ahmed and Mark McKeown, big names at Scottish and British level who are very good with our young boys.

“Our kids see Aqeel and Mark training in the gym and see the heights they need to get to in order to be successful boxers.”