BOXING: BOXER Lewis Williams had little time to celebrate completing his level three engineering course at college after being selected to attend a Team GB assessment camp in Sheffield.
The promising youngster will head north next week for a brutal four day assessment with some of the country’s most promising heavyweight fighters.
Based in Whitnash, Lewis has been mixing his studies in the classroom with fitness in the gym – completing a gruelling daily schedule which involves more than two hours at Clearys Boxing Gym every day.
The 18-year-old has experienced a successful year in the ring, with his only low coming at the Elite Championships in Rotherham when Williams lost out to Natty Ngwenya in the quarter finals by a split decision in only his fourth fight as a senior.
Speaking to The Observer ahead of his GB assessment, Williams appeared to remain rooted to reality – knowing plenty of hard work is still ahead.
He said: “Should the trial in Sheffield go well I’ll have the opportunity to train full-time and be a paid athlete, that’s the dream.
“I’m going to have to work my way up to that level though. Right now my focus is on this assessment before thoughts about the Olympics start to come in.
“I’m training seven days a week and working hard to learn different techniques to get my through 12 rounds.
“Training is the easy part, but learning those skills and adapting to fighting after ten rounds is tough – you have to learn that.”
Williams caught the eye of many when first taking to the ring after he was inspired to fight when some of his friends started using the gym.
Following in his dad’s footsteps, who also fought as a youngsters, Williams immediately caught the attention of onlookers, including his neighbour – a former sparring partner of legendary boxer Randolph Turpin.
Williams said: “My neighbour said I had a good punch when I first started. I didn’t take much notice of it then as I had only been boxing for a few weeks.
“I enjoy the challenge. This season has been fantastic with the only negative being my loss in the Elite Championships.
“I train as hard as I can for two-and-a-half hours five days a week, work on powerlifting on a Saturday and sprints on Sundays. I run to the gym everyday too.
“It’s all about mixing and matching.
“My height does help at times, but it can also make me slower – I prefer fighting tall opponents.”
Lewis’ GB assessment takes place from Wednesday, July 26, until Saturday, July 29.