YOUNG amateur fighters from Rotherham are among ring rookies hoping to become the next generation of champions from a renowned gym.
Formed by the late, great Brendan Ingle more than 50 years ago, the Ingle Gym at Wincobank is a place where countless youngsters have learnt the value of discipline, respect and health and fitness.
Some, most famously Naseem Hamed, Jonny Nelson, Junior Witter and Kell Brook, have gone on to become world champions.
Alongside the gym's pro section is a buoyant amateur arm, including a sizeable group of fighters from Rotherham who made a mark at the recent Yorkshire Championships.
Dean Bunclark, from Rotherham, is one of eight coaches in the amateur side overseen by Richard Parker and he say's the place is “buzzing” again.
“An official pulled me to one side and remarked how well we have developed in the last 18 months and how organised we've become,” said Dean.
“In the amateur ranks we are really moving up and challenging all the best clubs.”
His comments are backed up by recent successes.
Dean's son, Jay, won the 63kg section and Dinnington's Charlie Ellis was first in the 63kg section in a different age group.
Cole Weston, from Herringthorpe, is another good prospect and stablemate Callum Hannan, from Brinsworth, has looked good in his two skills bouts he's had so far.
The group also includes another prospect in Elias Salah, who lives near to the gym in Wincobank.
They take inspiration from the pros in the gym, which lately has included WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders, Kid Galahad and the returning Brook.
Cole Weston from Herringthorpe.
Dean added: “Kell Brook is back training and Kid Galahad is always in. We've got Liam Williams and Nicola Adams was with us until she retired recently.
“The gym is on fire again and the pathway, where the pros look after the amateurs and help fetch them through, is working at the minute.
“Our best amateurs train with the pros on Tuesdays and Thursdays and it develops them.
“Kid Galahad, for instance, trains like a machine. It is like he is in a fight all the time and these young lads see it and think that is the norm and that you have to train like that. They really look up to these people and it gives them the mental strength to go and achieve anything.
“It takes a good team to give the lads what they need and some of us are at the gym every day. It is hard at times but it is rewarding and the future is bright.”
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