The boxing ring returned to the Oxford Union chamber for the first time in two years last week. The atmosphere was electric as seven Oxford University Amateur Boxing Club (OUABC) fighters came away with wins.
The queues outside the chamber and in the Union bar beforehand were the perfect demonstration of just how desperate people had been for the event to return. Like so many other annual events it was cancelled last year as a result of the COVID-19 restrictions. That was perhaps why the atmosphere was so electric this time around, with tickets for the event sold out within half an hour of their release.
The event is steeped in history and sees members of the University Boxing Club take on opponents from different clubs across Oxford. This year there were ten fights with three different visiting clubs represented.
Things got off to an electric start with Jasmin Patel defeating Amelia Jeffries in a split decision. Both women showed impressive agility when moving about the ring in a highly tactical affair.
This contrasted significantly with the next bout. Felix Rolt came out on top over Tariq Sinnetamby in another all-university affair. Both boxers demonstrated their power and strength in a brutal fight that had the crowd on their feet throughout.
Vintel Romain and Sam Green followed up with wins from the red corner in two more impressive all University-affairs. They were both tight bouts with Josh Williams and William McClure both putting up strong resistance, especially in the early rounds.
Nelson Ramos was the first non-university boxer to take to the ring and the heat in the arena turned up a notch as a result. He promptly dispatched his university opponent, Joshua Fozard.
Blackbird Leys’ only fighter, Callum Harvey, won next and that was followed by another David Seifarth dominating fellow university fighter Daniel Hunt.
The biggest cheers of the night were reserved for Jacob Bigwell. In the penultimate fight of the night, he showed his class and skill to become the only university fighter to win against a visiting club with his win by split decision against Harry Clarkson from Banbury.
Loughborough University’s only fighter triumphed in the final round of the evening to bring a close to proceedings.
It was a noisy night in the chamber but above all the fighters from all camps showed impressive ability throughout.
Image: Oliver Hall