Making history as first female champ

Charlotte Jarvis
Charlotte Jarvis

Bridlington’s Charlotte Jarvis has made history by becoming the first female champion in the NABGC boxing championships.

The competition has been running for more than a century, but this was the first year that girls’ categories were included, and the 18-year-old took full advantage.

She headed to Croydon to take on unbeaten Martell Bennett, and took a unanimous decision from the judges in the 48-51kg - to go one better than in 2012 when she won a silver medal in the national schoolgirl championships.

Jarvis, who in 2011 became the first girl to represent Bridlington ABC, said: “It was absolute madness. It is just the best feeling.

“I was nervous on the way down, and I didn’t know anything about my opponent. I think if I had known she was unbeaten, I would have been more nervous.

“I won the silver medal in 2012 and I didn’t want it to happen again so I used that to drive me on.”

Head coach Damien Grant said: Everyone at the club is extremely proud of what Charlotte has achieved.

“She is currently studying for her A-Levels and working towards university, as well as having a part time job and coaching her own boxing sessions.

“She applies herself well to training and has a great amount of determination and focus. Charlotte was the first female boxer the club had seen compete and a number of years ago she was the only one in the gym.

“We now have loads of girls training regularly and currently have four female boxers competing.

“Charlotte’s achievements will work well as a good inspiration to show what can be accomplished.

“She becomes the fifth different national champion the club has had in as many years, something which everyone at the club is very proud of.”

Her opponent in the final, Bennett, was much taller and had a better reach.

The Bridlington School student said: “I knew I had to get in close and put the pressure on. I had to work constantly, putting in six or seven shots at once, taking one step back and the going straight back in.

“It was also the first time I had boxed four rounds, it was really hard, but I knew I had done a lot more work.

“Damien was confident at the final bell, but you never know until they raise your hand.

“I don’t think I have ever jumped so high.”

Coach Grant said: “She worked hard, throwing plenty of punches and rarely took a backwards step.

“Bennett tried to get into range and slow the pace down, but Charlotte was determined not to allow this.

“As the four rounds went on both boxers began to tire but it was Charlotte who was still setting a high pace.”