Whithorn Braveheart Tyler Jolly won a much deserved bronze medal at the European Schoolboy Boxing Championships in Dublin at the weekend.
The Braveheart was part of a seven strong boxing team sent by Scotland to compete at the highest level in European boxing, with 19 countries represented. The might of Russia and the Ukraine both sent a full squad of 18 boxers to compete, confirming their dominance in the sport.
Tyler’s bout in the quarter-final was against an Israeli boxer who from the first bell came out swinging massive shots trying to knock the young Scot out of the ring, but Tyler’s fast hands and silky footwork kept sidestepping the Israeli assault. Tyler then attacked the Israeli boxer with fast and furious counter-punches that forced the referee to give a mandatory eight count to allow the Israeli boy time to recover. Tyler was up off the stool waiting on the bell to sound for round two and punched his heart out sensing that the Israeli was struggling with the Braveheart lightweight’s power, resulting in the referee stopping the contest to save any further punishment and securing Tyler’s semi-final place.
In Friday night’s semi, Tyler faced the Irish number one boxer Jordan Myres. This bout started and finished with fireworks, with from both boxers giving their all and leaving nothing in the locker room. Myres is a front foot aggressive boxer who punches non-stop from bell to bell but the young Scottish boxer met him in the centre of the ring and gave no quarter. Tyler skilfully turned Myres and bombarded him with power shots that sent the Irish boxer stumbling across the ring. Myres received a public warning at the end of the first round and was deducted two points for slapping. Both the second and third round had everyone in the auditorium on their feet as the display they witnessed was awe inspiring.
At the end, the three foreign judges decided on a draw. That was the official result on the scorecards, but due to someone having to win the bout, a free vote was given back to the remaining judges. After much deliberation they opted for the Irish boy and Myres’ hand was raised.
Jordan Myers went on to win the gold medal and was given the best boxer of the tournament award.
Bravehearts coach Tom Jolly was at ringside all week in Dublin’s Citywest Hotel and said afterwards: “Tyler gave his all. He boxed brilliantly and showed great skill and deserved the win. But that’s the way the judges scored it. Tyler is officially the third best schoolboy boxer in Europe and coming fae oor wee club in Whithorn with limited facilities, to be able to compete at this level make us all very proud of his achievement.”
Out of Scotland’s seven boxers three made it through to the semifinals, Tyler, Nathan Shaw and Craig Morgan and they have now been named “The Terrific Trio”.
Having never previously won any medals in the schoolboy European championships, Scotland secured three bronze medals in this year’s event showing that the talent and dedication of the country’s boxers is steadily improving.