Fighter Farnhill thrills in fantastic finale to triumph

Burnley's Sandygate Amateur Boxing Club had two of its promising pugilists compete in the North West Development Championship Finals at The Last Drop Village, Bromley Cross.

Sandygate coaches Shane Armer and Andy Howcroft with Reece Farnhill
Sandygate coaches Shane Armer and Andy Howcroft with Reece Farnhill

Sandygate senior Reece Farnhill (18) faced the extremely popular Thomas Rafferty (Centurion’s ABC) in the 69kg welterweight category.

With both boys making great impressions in their respective semi-finals it was to be put on last as the main event and they didn’t disappoint.

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The first three minute round was a to and fro affair with the boxers not wishing to drop ground and both jockeying for centre circle.

The second saw the very exciting Farnhill dominate not giving Rafferty a moment while constantly connecting with his lead hand, almost stopping the very durable opponent in his tracks with every wave of attack.

The third and final was a master class from the Burnley boxer with his extreme fitness levels telling.

Farnhill was working off the jab, then switching well to the body with powerful hooks followed by exquisite uppercuts, to seriously expose his foe.

In the end it was no surprise that the judges ringside handed the talented teenager a unanimous decision victory.

That triumph earned Farnhill a place in the England Boxing National stages where he’ll go up against the Tyne Tees welterweight champion in the quarter-finals tomorrow at County Durham.

Meanwhile, Unity College student Sam Walsh (14) narrowly missed out in the North West Junior Novice 54kg final against A. Iqbal (Bury ABC) in a closely fought contest.

Anyone interested in joining the popular Hargreaves Street Boxing Gym can find details at