Up-and-coming talent Stan Stannard’s boxing dream has been re-ignited after he was invited to train with British Boxing’s Olympic Podium Potential squad.
The Harby boxer was called to a training day with the England Development Squad at the end of January, and impressed coaches enough to be asked to attend the podium potential squad training for the Tokyo 2020 games.
It is a huge step forward for the 20-year-old who had questioned his future in the sport after marginal judging decisions cost him wins in recent fights despite good performances.
He will benefit from a higher level of training with national coaches as well as sparring with other potential national team boxers.
His dad Adrian said: “Stan impressed the England coaches with his movement, style and ability and received favourable comments on the day. It was a fantastic experience for him.”
Following the stellar news, Stannard then returned to the everyday routine and his next bout.
Having been frustrated by previous opponents pulling out at short notice, the Clifton ABC club captain accepted a rematch with Jack Williams.
The Aston ABC boxer was recently ranked in the national top 10, and was looking to overturn a home defeat in Birmingham earlier this season.
Stannard boxed down the bill at his club’s first-ever home show to allow young clubmates to see him fight.
But with a crowd off 400 packing into the Farnborough Road Leisure Centre, Stannard struggled to find his form early on.
Both boxers started slowly and cagily with the Vale of Belvoir boxer edging the opening round.
Stannard’s supporters expected their man to find his rhythm in the next round, but feeling the weight of expectation, he looked hesitant and slow as the Birmingham man took the second round.
But as the bell rang for the last round, Stannard came out and boxed like his old self, overpowering his opponent with an onslaught of accurate and powerful punching, movement and skill, earning the win on a split decision.
He said: “He was an awkward customer and made the fight very difficult, but he could have made the fight more convincing.
“I’d like to thank everyone who attended the show and supported the club fighters.”