2002 Commonwealth Games gold medallist Jamie Arthur hosted his first amateur boxing event at the Rhydyfelin Sports Bar on Friday and it was a success with the show selling out and 11 bouts entertaining the capacity crowd.
The original estimate for attendance was 150 people but the response from the local community shocked Arthur’s Gym and there were 300 people through the doors by the end of the night.
Arthur said: “The turn-out was fantastic, it was twice the size we expected. The whole point of it was to give the boxers a chance to fight in front of their families, friends and fans because a lot of them didn’t have that chance before.
“This was the last show of the season, normally shows tailor off at this point in the calendar but demand was high for this. So, we’re thinking of doing another one when the next season gets started in September.”
Arthur’s Gym had four winners in the eight contests it was involved in and there were stellar performances from Rhys James, Thomas James, David White and Adam Cadwallader. There were learning losses for Dylan John, Mark Price, Matt Defis and Kyle Crowley but despite the mixed fortunes, Arthur was happy and he’s adamant that tough bouts are important for the development of a boxer.
He said: “Although they weren’t all perfect results, I’m pleased that the boxers did their best to do what I asked of them. There are lessons to be learnt, it’s my job to make sure my winners and losers are made aware of those lessons now and if they are then it will all be worth it. That’s what it’s all about.”
The Fight of the Night award was awarded to the light-heavyweight bout which saw Arthur’s Gym’s Welsh Novice Champion Mark ‘Sparky’ Price upset by Tylorstown’s Kevin Reed.
All of the 300 people in attendance stayed for the evening’s most eagerly awaited bout and it didn’t disappoint. It was a case of bombs away from the opening bell with Price attempting to take control of centre ring using his long jab and right hand. Despite having the vast majority of the crowd against him, Reed wouldn’t be deterred and he pressured Price to the ropes which led to excellent all-action exchanges for the full three minutes.
There were two all-Arthur’s Gym exhibition bouts between Luke Dwyer, Rhys Woolford, Harry Walton and Kyle Arthur. Arthur’s Gym would like to thank the Tylorstown, Maesteg, Bargoed, Pen Aber, Barry East End and Alway amateur boxing clubs for playing their part in a memorable night of boxing.
Arthur’s Gym would also like to thank everyone who contributed to the show and made it possible, especially sponsors BodyViUK, Hawkes Essentials, J Williams Home & Gardening Services, Colin Laver Heating, RCT Homes, Customise Clothing, Vale Line Plastering and Steve Bevan Kick Boxing.