Van Emminis vs Alex Jones wows Boxing crowd at Bideford ABC’s tournament

Matt Van Emminis of Bideford ABC lands one on Tiverton’s Alex Jones Place your cursor on the right hand side of the photo and click to advance slideshow.

A sell out crowd watched Bideford Amateur Boxing Club’s Annual tournament tonight, hosted by Bideford College. The program was full of local talent featuring 17 contests, 10 of which were senior bouts. Liam Laird from Barnstaple was effective in an all-action bout, defeating Tom Frame of Jersey Leonis. He will join Jack Langford in the Western Counties Finals this weekend.

For the first time in the club’s history there was a father and son duo on the same bill, Andy and Josh Short. Both won their contests. Father Andy boxed another Bideford fighter, Mark Morrey, in a heavyweight bout.

Morrey took the first round with his all-out aggression.Short took over in the 2nd landing his poker jab. Both gave their all in the last but it was Short who won on points using his reach to overcome Morrey.

His son Josh Short made his debut against Jack Evans from Intense ABC, using the same tactics as his father Josh. Short jabbed Evans back against the ropes, finishing with a solid right. Evans came back in the second with powerful hooks to the body and head but it was Josh Short who won on points.

Billy Stanbury provided the evening’s most dramatic performance against Storm Look of Weymouth ABC. Stanbury wasted no time, moving in fast with a series of combinations to the body and head. Look landed a big right uppercut at the end of the first round, but in the second round Stanbury sensed the finish, trapping Look on the ropes until the ref saved Look from further punishment, allowing Stanbury a TKO win.

Alex Dovell won the award for boxer of the night. He fought the more experienced Colum Siddons from Weymouth. Dovell Controlled all three rounds, switching attacks from body to head and showing great ring craft. Dovell nearly finished it with a left hook to the body in the last but Siddons went the distance with Dovell winning on points.

Bideford’s Matty Van Emmenis was in the bout of the night against Tiverton’s Alex Jones. Jones landed strong body shots in the first showing superior strength. The second round was a war of combinations. Van Emmenis had a big last round pushing Jones around the ring with uppercuts to the head and hooks to the body. Jones managed to hang on to win a tight points decision through his work in the early stages of the fight.

Alex Downie made his debut facing Joe Golding of Ilfracombe. Downie looked comfortable boxing with his hands down showing elusive head movement and picking Golding off with a sharp Jab. In the 2nd it was a four punch sequence that sent Golding to the canvas first time around. Still on shaky legs Downie finished it with a big right forcing the ref to stop the fight with Downie winning by a TKO.

There were a couple more stoppages during the event. One came from Aiden Vitali, already known for his strength. He faced Nick Forrest of Barnstaple. Vitali showed all out aggression from the bell whipping in the body shots. It was a right uppercut that forced the first standing count. Vitali kept up the pressure with big punches forcing a first round stoppage.

Another Bideford boxer showing promise is Callum Cunningham, who won his debut fight with a 2nd round stoppage last week and it was the same result tonight, this time over Jake Hooper from Barnstaple ABC after forcing the ref to stop the fight.

Billy Parson’s had a big following to watch his bout against Jack Marks from Exeter ABC. Marks towered above Parsons and used his feet well to take the first round. Parson’s upped the pressure in the 2nd, working on the inside to land big left crosses and cracking right hooks. It was in the balance at the last, Parson’s scoring with higher powered punches, but Marks had a higher work rate with combinations to nab a tight split decision.

Ben Owen had a bad night losing a rematch to Ryan Hibbert of Devonport ABC. Owen didn’t wake up until the last round, losing by a split decision.

Bailey Radcliffe will feel hard done by too as it looked like he had done enough to beat Buddy Holly of Barton Hill ABC. Ratcliffe showed fast feet and hands, landing flurries, but the verdict went the other way favouring Holly’s power.

George Parker had his first fight at home against Josh Cunningham of Devonport ABC, Parker had plenty of fight in him but Cunningham took the points on skill.

Two Bideford boxers at the start of their career showed promise, 10 year olds Jacob Stevenson and Freddie White featured in skills bouts against George Lock and Ned Pettifer of Torrington. Both showed fast feet and tidy punching.

Also on the bill was Dillyn Courtney of Camborne ABC stopping Danny Smith of Tamar in an Elite championship bout and James Sharpe of Barton Hill beating Riley Hodkins of Camborne.

All in all it was an excellent night of boxing enjoyed by an expressive capacity audience.