Boxers bag three titles medals
BOXING: Rhys Evans led the charge at the Queensland State Titles in Acacia Ridge.
Evans, the 2016 Ben McEachran Medal winner and fellow Gladstone Amateur Boxing Association athlete Orion Brown won gold, while Jordy Dunnett collected a silver medal in the first major bout of 2017 at the weekend.
Evans' win was made more impressive because he stepped up from the 60kg to 64kg Elite division, beating Inner North's Ji Marino in the final.
"It was my first time in the 64kg division and I felt like I was on top during the fight,” 24-year-old Evans said.
"He was taller than me so I had to go under his jabs and I had to counter-punch.”
The win puts him well and truly in the 2018 Commonwealth Games selection frame, along with his brother Sean and Orion.
But there are more competitions up for grabs between now and then.
"There's the Australian Titles at the start of April followed by the World Titles mid-year, another Queensland Titles in September,” Evans said.
"Win them then we'll book a place for the Commonwealth Games.”
So what prompted Evans to go up a weight division?
"I competed at three state titles at 60kg with no medals so I decided to go up a division,” Evans said.
Riley Whitestyles beat Jordy to win gold in the under-15 46kg class while Orion got the better of Luke Martin in the Elite 56kg final.
GABA assistant coach Shane Kitching said the other Gladstone fighters did not fare as well.
"Jai Ghee lost the first round to the eventual 48kg champion Cameron Little,” Kitching said. "Tr'e Sirriss also lost straight up and he missed out.”
Sean Evans and Anthony Taylor also lost their fights.