Cambridge's Reena Sandhu goes on the attackMatthew Thompson at Rockethouse Productions

Cambridge University Amateur Boxing Club (CUABC) suffered a 11-3 defeat to the Town boxing clubs in the annual Town v Gown event. Mimo Sandford, the CUABC 2022-23 women’s captain, said: “every single Cambridge boxer who stepped into the ring showed a lot of heart and did themselves and CUABC proud.” Men’s captain Will Tan echoed this sentiment: “This performance put on by the team was nothing short of incredible.”

The first fight of the evening saw CUABC’s Reena Sandhu face off against Britannia Boxing’s Beth Paine. Paine started with a strong volley of combinations, catching Sandhu with several right hooks early. Despite Reena’s success in establishing control with the jab in later rounds, Beth won on split decision. In the first men’s bout of the night CUABC captain Will Tan took on Islington’s Toks Rowaiye in a match that looked more like wrestling than boxing. Both boxers were light on their feet, culminating in numerous clinches and slippages. It ended as a split decision in Toks’s favour.

The early CUABC defeat was followed up with a strong showing from Mimo Sandford against Islington boxing club’s Preya Virk. In one of the most technical fights of the evening, both boxers demonstrated exceptionally fast footwork, although Preya’s left hand proved to be too much in the end, securing a split decision in her favour. Literally jumping in anticipation, CUABC’s Nia Hall kicked off the fourth match, against Islington’s Chang Dong. A measured bout quickly turned into a brutal slugfest as Nia tried to slip onto the inside of Chang’s lead hand. Up against strong outboxing, Nia suffered a serious nosebleed and the fight ended with a technical stoppage in the third.

James Green represented CUABC against Hardeep Atwal and secured early dominance with a series of left hooks. Nonetheless, by the third round James was tired but saw the threat off with a series of jabs, keeping Hardeep away to score an undisputed victory in points. Following this momentum, Cambridge boxer Adam Lonie scored a convincing victory against Tom Charnock. Adam demonstrated impressive composure, combined with the speed, power, and technique, to avoid and counter Tom’s flurry of punches. The judges awarded a unanimous decision, taking the score to 4-2 in favour of Town.

The next match saw CUABC’s Sam “The Bradford Bullet” Tarr face off against Austin Whelan. In a technical orthodox-southpaw matchup, Austin controlled tempo with his lead hand and landed several solid backhands. In response, Sam deployed his lightening lead hook and the trusty old “Bradford Triangle”, but it wasn’t enough and Austin took the win by split decision.

Harman Brar goes on the attackMatthew Thompson at Rockethouse Productions

Cambridge Boxer Joel Camara met Ibrahim Colak in an extremely close match. Both boxers traded blow for blow, but it was Colak’s strong double jab-backhand combo which trapped Camara in the corner throughout, earning him a split decision victory. CUABC’s Dan Cossey followed with a nail-biting three rounds against Habib Sesay. Sesay made intelligent use of the overhand right to land several shots on the taller Cambridge boxer. Cossey attempted to push his opponent back but Sesay held on for victory.

CUABC’s Gabriel Duval fought the imposing Piers Costello in what quickly turned into a melee. Gabriel took the lead in round one with measured range and neat use of his longer reach. He was overcome in the later rounds by an aggressive onslaught from Piers, who shouted “BAP, BAP” as he landed right hands. It is little wonder Gabriel struggled to beat a man with his own sound effects. Harman Brar from Town fought Gown’s Eran Cornelius in a match lined with Harman’s supporters. All three rounds saw a similar pattern as Cornelius kept Harman at as a distance using his jab and light footwork. The result was a win for Eran by split decision, taking the score to 9-2.


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In the 11th, and heaviest match of evening CUABC’s Angus McIntosh took a solid beating from the neon-vested Luke Prendergast. Despite a balanced start, Angus was unable to fend off Luke’s heavy blows, earning numerous standing counts until Coach Lee threw in the towel. In the absolutely electrifying penultimate fight, Kiran Lang for CUABC fought Mario Kyriakou for an undisputed victory. Both fighters threw out numerous haymakers and, after multiple standing counts on his adversary, Kiran was given a unanimous victory.

Jonathan So from CUABC battled Attenborough’s Adem Clark in the final fight of the night. Despite an impressive early hook to Clark’s body, Jonny was overwhelmed by his opponent’s powerful lead right hand. The Attenborough boxer ended the fight with seconds to go in the second with a flurry of shots to So’s face. CUABC’s fighters will return in the 114th Varsity Match on Friday 10 March, where they aim to break the pre-Covid 54-54 deadlock.