24th June 2011

Andrew Selby becomes Wales’ first European amateur champion in 86 years  – www.gbboxing.org.uk
Great Britain’s amateur team this week had there best European Championship return in over 50 years, when the squad of talented boxers claimed a haul of medals, with two golds, one silver and a bronze at the tournament in Ankara, Turkey

Welshman Andrew Selby was crowned Wales’ first European amateur champion in 86 years after a competitive final victory 13-10 over three-time former champion Georgy Balakshin of Russia.

Selby also became only the second Briton to win European gold in the last 60 years, after England’s Luke Campbell in 2008, sealing the Gold after pulling off a mature controlled performance against an experienced flyweight rival, who also won a bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics.

Leading 3-1 after a nip and tuck first session, Selby maintained the advantage throughout to finally claim the gold. It is a proud moment for the 22 year olds persistence to claim a European title paid off beautifully after his two previous attempts fell short winning two bronze medals in the same competition.

Selby will now be looking to go to the world championships and claim the gold medal there, he will also be a big hope for Olympic gold at London 2012 – we wish him the best of luck and give him every chance in the world!

Fellow Welshman Fred Evans quickly followed Selby success, becoming Wales’ second gold medal winner beating Mahamed Nurudzinau of Belarus 15-9 at welterweight. It was a scrappy contest, but Evans was always one step ahead and soon racked up the points to grasp his first gold.

Evans’ victory left Great Britain with two golds, one silver and a bronze for Charlie Edwards in what will go down, in terms of gold medals, as Britain’s best European Championship performance in over half a century.

Liverpool light-welterweight Thomas Stalker had to settle for the silver after losing in the final to Ireland’s Ray Moylette who claimed Ireland’s first gold of the championships with a hard-fought all action 18-10 victory.

Teenage light-flyweight Charlie Edwards, competing in his first senior international competition won a bronze medal after losing to Azerbaijan’s Salman Alizada 15-9 in a spirited performance by the youngster.

The 18-year-old had defeated Spain’s two-time former European medallist Jose Kelvin de la Nieve to get to the semi final. It has been a splendid achievement by Edwards, who was only promoted to the Great Britain podium programme in May after winning his first ABA title.

Well done to all the GB squad for a fantastic showing in Ankara from www.britishboxers.co.uk

Results and reviews courtesy of www.gbboxing.org.uk

52kg: Andrew Selby v Georgy Balakshin (Russia) 13-10

Gold for Selby!

Another fantastic display from Selby and the gold medal a just reward for first draw performances throughout the tournament. Andrew edged into a 3-1 lead at the end of the first. The second round was equally cagey and Andrew used patience rather than his trademark quickfire shots, but his patience was rewarded in the last as the openings arrived and Andrew boxed to a 13-10 win and the gold medal.

64kg: Tom Stalker v Ray Moylette (Ireland) 10-18

Tom wins silver

Despite a great effort in which Tom threw the far greater number of punches, the Irishman’s tight defence and isolated shots was enough to deprive Tom of the gold. Tom was unlucky to go into the second round only level pegging at 5-5, and then the Irishman pulled away to lead 12-8 at the end of the second. In these championships that has been too much to claw back, and Tom has to settle for the silver medal which was the least he deserved.

69kg: Fred Evans v Mahamed Nurudzinau (Belarus) 15-9

Fred wins gold!

Fred wins gold in his first senior major championship. Fred was always the stronger boxer physically and technically. Gaining a 4-2 at the end of the first Fred just ground down his opponent who simply couldn’t back into the contest thwarted by Fred’s intransigence and telling blows.

A great performance from the team, and especially the boxers. To come away with two gold medals, a silver and a bronze is another fantastic achievement.