Sophie Morton (3rd, Q) has just become the national champion of the England Boxing Schools and Minors Championship, where over 140 boxers fought for a coveted pair of golden gloves. Here, she tells us more about her success:
Tell me about your recent boxing successes?
I have just won the ABA national title against Jessica Pattenson from Alnwick Boxing Club. That is the highest title I could win at this stage and I am very proud of my golden gloves. So far this season I have had five bouts and I am undefeated.
How did this passion start?
My parents bought me a punch bag for my birthday two years ago, as a fun present but they did not anticipate that I would enjoy it so much. I spent hours in the basement practising my jabs and my hooks; from there I went to my first session in Droitwich Amateur Boxing Club. I am one of two girls in the club for over 20 men from all ages, so it can be impressive but I like the challenge and breaking the sexist stereotype.
What kind of training does this involve?
I train four times a week from two to three hours each time where we do a range of physical activities from skipping to sparring. Each session ends with either an abdominal circuit or a fitness circuit. It was tough at first but my muscles have now adapted to the pressure and I enjoy the intensity of the training. My coach is called Jayson Doyle and he really believes in me and pushes me to the max, which is great.
What are your future goals?
As the champion in England, I now have matches coming up against girls in my category from Wales and Scotland. When I win those, I will then become part of Team GB and start training with them to go to international contests. My ultimate goal is Tokyo 2020. Mr Bates promised that if I make it to the Olympics, he would commission a bronze statue of me to put in Queen’s drive, just like Rocky in Philadelphia - I look forward to it!