Irish silver for Ryan

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Shirebrook boxer Ryan Hopkinson (13) returned home from the Monkstown Cup in Ireland with a silver medal after valiantly losing the final for his age and 45kg weight.

The silver was still a massive achievement for himself and Chesterfield boxing club.

Up against boxers from England, Ireland, Germany, Scotland and other EU countries, Ryan battled his way to a semi-final was against Alfie Despie, of Billercay ABC.

Despie came out strong, throwing lots of shots, but to Ryan’s credit he remained calm and slipped most of the shots while landing good strong counter punches.

Ryan’s power was starting to tell in round two and the heavy counters he was landing were taking the steam out of Despie’s work.

Ryan moved up a gear in round three and took the attack to Despie, who was now wary of Ryan’s power, and won himself a place in the final.

That was a big ask as he was to fight Michael Myres (Crumlin ABC Ireland ), the undefeated national champion, with a large percentage stoppage rate and also the defending Monkstown champion.

Despite a valiant attempt by Ryan, Myres’ experience told and Ryan was peppered with shots as he came in.

By round two, Ryan was getting his head round his opponent and having some success.

With advice from his corner, Ryan then took the fight to Myres, having a very good final round, but ended up beaten.

Chesterfield head coach Dean Smith said he was very proud of Ryan’s achievement , and what impressed him most was how Ryan handled the fact that he was in another country, mixing with national champions from various countries and didn’t seem fazed by it.

Last year, when boxing for Bolsover ABC, Ryan had reached the National Schoolboy quarter-finals.