Reiko causes a riot to move into ABA Championship semis

Reiko 'Riot' Rickwood is through to the ABA Minors' semi-final
Reiko 'Riot' Rickwood is through to the ABA Minors' semi-final

Sandygate Amateur Boxing Club were in action in the England Boxing (ABAs) Minors’ Championship Quarter-Finals at Croxteth, Liverpool.

North West Regional champions Reiko “Riot” Rickwood (12) and “Smokin’” Joe Crawford (11) both faced tough opposition in the Merseyside and Cheshire champions in their own back yards!

First up for the Hargreaves Street club was Crawford against well-supported local J. Turner (Croxteth ABC) at 37kg, over three one-and-a-half-minute rounds, in what turned into quite a battle.

Straight from the opening bell, Crawford dampened the advances of the stocky Liverpudlian, moving well, catching and countering with relative ease.

The second and third, however, saw a rejuvenated Turner come forward constantly, breaking the flow of the unbeaten Ightenhill boxer, not allowing him to get back into his stride.

It was to a hushed crowd that the verdict was announced, a split decision 2-1 in favour of the Croxteth pugilist.

Unbeaten Rickwood was up next against K. Maher (Aintree ABC) at 43kg.

A very determined Stoops Estater glared at his opposite corner during the introductions by the MC, which ended up lasting longer than the actual bout.

Straight from the sound of the bell, the Hameldon Year 7 pupil unleased a constant flow of lead, rear hand ram-rod straight punches, which forced their way through the guard of the Merseyside champion, giving the man-in-the-middle no choice but to administer a standing eight count to the rated Maher.

The referee resumed the bout, but the Sandygate starlet kept his composure and exchanged a brief burst of shots, turning Maher onto the ropes before unloading a barrage of straight lead and rear hands with such ferocity, it had the hostile crowd gasping, forcing intervention once again from the referee.

With Rickwood now residing in a neutral corner, the count again reached the mandatory eight before it was called to a halt, earning Rickwood the Championships’ only first round TKO.

Rickwood now boxes the Tyne Tees/East Midlands Champion in the semi-finals on Sunday, again in Liverpool.

Ever active Will “Bad-Boy” Smith (15) boxes again tonight at the Reebok Arena, Bolton hoping to keep his perfect season intact.

Anyone interested in joining the club can via www.sandygateabc.com or Nik (07855505719) or Andy (07866073353).