Burnley boxer Sam is lightweight champ!

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Sandygate ABC seniors picked up their first title of the new season when lightweight Sam Larkin won the ABA Senior Novice North West title.

The 21-year-old won a hard-fought battle against P. Hervey (Leigh ABC, 31) at the Boxing Centre of Excellence in Gorton, Manchester.

Looking cool, calm and collected, Larkin started at the bell with grace and vigour, connecting well early with a fast lead to the head.

Working off the back foot the Hargreaves Street pugilist continued to connect well and also covered up as Hervey launched a strong phase of attack.

The second round was a cracking affair with both boxers sharing the dominance in the centre of the squared circle with Larkin ending the round strongest.

The third was the Burnley-based boxer’s best as his fitness level came to the forefront, still moving around the ring at speed, shooting out a rapid jab.

Larkin started getting through the guard of Hervey, especially with his right upper-cut follow.

The fourth and final of the two-minute championship rounds saw Larkin dig to the depths, displaying deadly accurate leads.

Hervey, sensing he was behind, gave it one last volley, but Larkin was not to be moved, countering as well as connecting.

The large following was hushed as the winner was announced, with the roof raised when Larkin was named the victor on a majority verdict by the five judges ringside.

“We knew Hervey was resilient and no fool, but Sam stuck to the plan and dominated in the latter rounds” beamed Larkin’s ecstatic coach Andy Howcroft.

The next round is against the yet to be announced Midlands champion on November 4th, also in Manchester.

The area’s busiest boxer “Padiham Power Station” Brandon Hartley (16) was out in his sixth bout in six weeks when he was pitted against J. Nixon (Tameside Elite ABC) on the Beartown ABC, Congleton home show. The first was a grizzly affair with both boys testing the water, and, keeping a tight guard, Hartley countered well.

The second was a more settled affair with the exciting Hartley trapping Nixon with some deft feints, and rear hand leads.

The third and last round once again saw the Mancunian fighter pander to the feinting of the ring savvy Sandygate boxer.

It was to no surprise when the man-in-the-middle raised young Hartley’s hand at the end, making it five wins out of sixs for the hot-prospect.

“Branny’s having a rest now for a week or two” smiled Sandygate coach Nik Tucker after another quality display.

Anyone interested in taking up the noble art can contact the club via their website www.sandygateabc.com