More than 200 junior, youth and elite boxers gathered in Boras, Sweden from 8-10 January for the 2016 King of the Ring Tournament. Starting out life in 2012, the fifth edition of the competition attracted another strong line up to the small town of 70,000 people, with England, Norway and the home nation dominating the medals.
Veteran boxer and 2008 Olympic Games competitor Ronald Serugo retained his title by unanimous decision in the bantamweight final against England’s Kyran O’Neill, whose team-mate Sahir Iqbal was also a losing finalist, defeated by Norway’s Angelo Bernhard in the light welterweight gold-medal match.
English hopes were dashed once again as another Norwegian, Yohannes Berhane, defeated Jordan Flynn to take lightweight gold, and Simen Nysaeter completed a good day for Norway’s elite squad with super heavyweight gold. Nysaeter’s strong showing in the Tammer tournament in Finland two months ago had seen him selected for the team despite a lack of big-match experience.
“I wasn’t totally pleased with my performance despite the gold medal. I wanted to be quick and sharp and on the move but I felt quite heavy. This wasn’t my best performance, but these are early days in my preparations for the AIBA European Olympic Qualifying Tournament,” said Nysaeter afterwards.
In the youth tournament, English middleweight Harris Akbar dominated his final against Albion Rexhaj to ensure he will be one to watch at the forthcoming AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships in October, as will Norway’s red-hot 17-year-old Shamsudin Shamilov, who caused an upset when he defeated Ukraine’s gold medal favourite Arkadiy Kartsan in the light heavyweight final.
“It was a tough final but probably the best of my career. I am satisfied now having beaten the strong Ukrainian, but there are some things which need to be improved upon for next time and as I get ready for the World Championships and European Confederation Championships,” said the Norwegian after his triumph.
Full list of winners in the King of the Ring Tournament
Junior 50 kg: Adam Hussain, England
Junior 54 kg: Kieran Cormican, England
Junior 57 kg: Andreas Palm, Sweden
Junior 63 kg: Don Emini, Norway
Junior 66 kg: Pontus Karlsson, Sweden
Youth 52 kg: Masi Jurvanen, Finland
Youth 56 kg: Mohammadhossein Wersaneh, Finland
Youth 60 kg: Hasan Omar, Sweden
Youth 64 kg: Pavlo Gula, Ukraine
Youth 75 kg: Harris Akbar, England
Youth 81 kg: Shamsudin Shamilov, Norway
Elite 52 kg: Ali Rezai, Sweden
Elite 56 kg: Ronald Serugo, Sweden
Elite 60 kg: Yohannes Berhane, Sweden
Elite 64 kg: Angelo Bernhard Torres, Norway
Elite 69 kg: Abdul Ibrahim, England
Elite 75 kg: Jordan Reynolds, England
Elite 81 kg: Abdesslam Chabi, Sweden
Elite 91 kg: Armintas Dluckys, Norway
Elite +91 kg: Simen Nysaeter, Norway