MEMBERS of a Dalmuir boxing club have made a successful return to the ring in their first competition since the start of the pandemic.

Antonine Boxing Club members headed to Dumbarton FC just before Christmas to compete in their first home show with six boxers representing areas in Clydebank and Drumchapel.

Proud coach James Hilton said that the boys have been training hard in the run up to this event.

James told the Post: “The club started off in the Antonine Centre in Duntocher before we needed to find our own space, and are now in a brilliant gym put together by the members in Dalmuir.

“We moved to the gym in January 2020 before we had to close down due to the pandemic. We continued our sessions through Zoom and outdoors before we were allowed back in the gym.

“This is also our first competitive season, affiliated to Boxing Scotland under Sports Scotland.

“It was great to be permitted to host a home show just before the Christmas break. Dumbarton FC’s hospitality suite was a great venue for the show. We had 12 bouts and one exhibition on the night.”

To start the night off Curtis Bartley from Linnvale and Jack McCrae from Hardgate put on an exhibition in the ring, showing off their excellent skills.

Then Steve D’Ambrosio from Duntocher won a 3-2 split decision in another gruelling bout. The home boxer’s arm was raised by the judges to give Antonine their second win of the evening.

Next up was Adam Gallagher of Dalmuir in a repeat of his Scottish Schoolboys final – and the Anotonine boxer came out on top again.

He was also judged best home boxer of the night, and finished the year as the Scottish champion in his division, with hopes of adding more titles in 2022.

Callum Hamilton competed next with his aggressive style forcing a standing eight count on his opponent in the first round. It was more of the same in the second round before the referee stopped the bout.

The last bout of the night saw Leo Church from Drumchapel, Scottish champion at 60kg, step up two weight divisions to secure an opponent – but the gamble paid off when he dominated the first round with raking jabs and thudding backhands.

In the second round Leo moved through the gears switching attack from head to body. Following a stabbing left hook to the body the referee stopped the contest with his Greenock opponent still on his knees.

James added: “The boxers have stuck with us through the turmoil of lockdown and then the uncertainty of what has followed.

“The coaches and committee members all give their time freely week in week out, so being able to host a show and the end of this two year rollercoaster made us all immensely proud.”

For more information or to join search for Antonine Boxing on Facebook.