A strong English squad left today for one of their first major events on the road to the home Olympics in London 2012 - the 2011 European Championships in Ankara, Turkey.
Beijing Olympian and European Championships silver medalist 22-year-old Khalid Saeed Yafai is a gold medal contender in the flyweight class. The young fighter first joined the national squad in 2007 and he will therefore have experience on his side in Ankara.
Liverpool-based Thomas Stalker took a silver medal at the last edition of the European Men's Elite Championships in Moscow last year. Following that he took a gold at the Commonwealth Games in India and picked up the best boxer trophy of the year. He also has a good chance of making the podium in his new light welterweight class.
After some unexpected losses, former European Champion Luke Campbell has won six international tournaments since September and maintains an unbeaten record this year. Campbell has triumphed over most of his biggest rivals, making it almost his duty to bring back gold from Ankara.
European Youth Champion and Tammer Tournament winner 20-year-old Martin Ward went up a weight class last year and shocked his strong rivals in the lightweight division in the preparation events for the European Championships. Ward's target is a simply medal in Ankara and the Olympic quota at the World Championships.
Scott Cardle advanced to the quarter-final at the AIBA World Championships in Milan where he fought in the light welterweight class. After Ward and Stalker both moved up a weight so did he and his fans will therefore see him in the welterweight division in Ankara.
Anthony Ogogo caused the biggest surprise at the Commonwealth Games when he eliminated India's Olympic Games bronze medalist and national hero Vijender Singh. Ogogo claimed the gold medal at the Strandja Memorial Tournament in February and England's middleweight hope will be fighting for at least a medal in Ankara as well.
Commonwealth Games quarter-finalist Obed Mbwakongo is the nation's best light heavyweight competitor who recorded some top results in youth and junior tournaments. Ankara may now be his opportunity to notch up a first success among elite boxers.
Heavyweight Daniel Price is back on track with great results and could be in for a medal in Ankara. England's youngest team member is Newham-based Charlie Edwards who celebrated his 18th birthday only in February, while Anthony Joshua is also a newcomer in the team and will be competing in the super heavyweight division, where he is unbeaten in 2011.
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