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Powerday Hooks send great eight through to National Schoolboys' semi-final bouts

PUBLISHED: 16:00 17 May 2018

Powerday Hooks ABC's Leo Lacourt, Nathan Barrett, Michael O'Donnell, Brian O'Donnell, Steve Newland and Tony O'Donnell

Powerday Hooks ABC's Leo Lacourt, Nathan Barrett, Michael O'Donnell, Brian O'Donnell, Steve Newland and Tony O'Donnell

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Powerday Hooks ABC will have eight young boxers in semi-final action at the National Schoolboys' Championships at Harrow Leisure Centre on Sunday.

The Park Royal club maintained their charge for more honours at the quarter-finals at Feltham’s Springwest Academy last weekend, where the start was delayed due to a big crowd.

Michael O’Donnell, 12, was first in action at 34kg, only to lose a very close contest to Zyan Sadiq (The Ring).

O’Donnell was slightly off the pace in the first round but came up with a big second round, only to let his advantage slip in the final round.

There was better news for Nathan Barrett, 12, in the 40kg category as he boxed with skill and composure to win all three rounds against Frankie Thompson, from Smokey’s ABC.

And Pat Doherty, 12, was handed a walkover in the 44.5kg section, while warming up, after his rival pulled out just 15 minutes before the start.

Last year’s national finalist Tony O’Donnell, 13, squeezed through in the 31kg after beating Suffolk youngster Scott Stannard (Sudbury ABC) in an extremely close contest.

And southpaw Brian O’Donnell, 14, kept his hopes of a return to the final alive with victory over a much taller Edward Smith (Hoddesdon ABC) at 32.5kg.

The crowd were on their feet during an all-action thriller, with quality punches thrown in bunches by both competitors, before O’Donnell’s accuracy, determination and ability to have the last word in fierce exchanges proved key with the judges.

Leo Lacourt, 14, did enough to earn the narrowest of wins in his 38.5kg meeting with Frankie Wood (Billericay ABC) to also go through to the delight of coach Steve Newland.

“The club couldn’t have a better way to announce our new gym – with eight boxers in next week’s national semi-finals. This is a major achievement,” he said.

“Nathan Barrett was outstanding and Brian O’Donnell has come through back-to-back thrillers. Some of the other lads were not at their best but they have a week to put that right.

“Three contests were extremely close and fortunately two of them went our way.”

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