HE MAY have lost in his attempt to win the English title on Saturday night, but Danny Quatermaine left Birmingham with his head held high after going toe-to-toe with Cory O’Regan in what proved to be an entertaining battle.
The Leamington boxer, who was backed by an army of over 150 supporters, lost by the narrowest of margins to O’Regan from Bradford College and battled on to the very end despite having to fight with a swollen left eye for most of the encounter.
O’Regan successfully defended his belt with a paper thin split decision after Quatermaine more then held his own and at times forced the English champion onto the ropes for sustained periods while landing several key body shots.
But a clash of heads in the first round left the Clearys ABC boxer with a swollen eye and O’Regan went on to show his class by scoring with his counter punches which impressed the judges.
“It was that close,” said coach Edwin Cleary. “None of the lads deserved to lose – I couldn’t pick a winner.
“Danny will take much from this stella showing not only pushing England’s best to a flip of a coin decision but doing so with his lead eye closed for most of the bout.
“He had to box much of the bout in a southpaw stance to protect his left eye, and credit where credit is due, against one of England’s best, that took some doing.”
Next up for Quatermaine is a shot at the Central England Elite Open Lightweight Belt on March 5 which is currently held by Owen O’Leary (Bell Green ABC).
Elsewhere, it is a big week for 17-year-old youth heavyweight boxer Lewis Williams who will go up against seven of the best in his category at the Youth Championships.
Williams will have to prepare for three fights in as many days if he is going to be crowned champion on Sunday but Cleary is confident he can go all the way.
He added: “It’s going to take not only fitness and boxing ability, but mental strength and character to win this season’s championships, but I think Lewis is more than capable of pulling this off.
“He will take this weekend as a challenge and that’s in his characters. He’s super fit, very strong and he will take some stopping.
“Over the last couple of years I’ve watched Lewis grow not just in height but his character. I believe he’s got the character to win this and push on and become something very special.”
This week also sees the start of the Junior Championships with female boxer Morgan Ansell and Josh Finch entering the Warwickshire rounds.
Both have been tipped to follow in the footsteps of Quatermaine and Lewis and have a bright future in the ring.