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Fighters look ahead after failures


By Ron Shillingford
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Cayman’s top amateur boxers – Dariel Ebanks and Hopkin Ebanks – performed superbly at the Amateur Boxing Confederation championships in Honduras but came up short in their opening bouts.

Both were outpointed in Tegucigalpa earlier this month and now they are focused on their next challenges.

At least they can glean a certain amount of satisfaction in their defeats. Hopkin, 19, lost to the world No.3 Jose Gabriel Perez of Venezuela in his welterweight (69kg) bout and 28-year-old Dariel Ebanks lost a majority decision to Osmar Bravo Amador of Nicaragua in the 81kg light-heavyweight division.

National coach Ryan Barrett said: “Dariel and Hopkin are both ready for more fights. They just need to find out about funding and all of that, as Mike Laurenson from Elite Granite and Marble has funded all the money for the training camp, sparring partner, food, accommodation and physio.

“Both need to make their choices for the future. Whether it’s pro or amateur but both boxers could do a cracking job for the Cayman in the Commonwealth Games in April if the government funding is correct or again, they get outside funding.
“Or the professional world will call for them both or either.”

Both Cayman fighters spent two months in London training at the Gumshield Gym in Eltham.

Chambria Dalhouse joined the two just before they left to return home. She is still in the United Kingdom, preparing for the Youth Commonwealth Games in The Bahamas next month.

“Chambria is doing amazing, she is a true warrior and a massive credit to her mother,” said coach Barrett. “To move to London for two months alone as a 17-year-old is a big step and to spar daily and drop 6kg she has done fantastic.

“Again, this trip has been funded by Mike from Elite. He has helped these three boxers give their best in trying to achieve their goals. He is a true gentleman and I can’t thank him enough.”

Barrett is continuing working with the boxers even though he has not been offered a new contract and feels his input is not as appreciated as it deserves.

“My record is second to none as a fighter and as a coach. Since being the Cayman coach the standard has been so high. I’m a former amateur star boxer, former English and world professional champion.”

About Ron Shillingford

Ron is a former Cayman based sports editor. He is a best-selling author and novelist, and has worked as a sub-editor on some of the U.K.’s leading national newspapers. He is a certified tutor in English, writing assignments for various publications and websites and ghostwriting memoirs for the London-based publishers Story Terrace. A veteran journalist of more than 30 years standing, Ron’s area of expertise includes sports, human interest and local news reporting.

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