title dedicated to John

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Mark O’Reilly has dedicated Demie-Jade Resztan’s National Senior Elite Championships title win to late coach John Humphrey.

Resztan beat last year’s winner Tanya Dady by a unanimous decision in the 46-48kg final at Liverpool’s Echo Arena on Sunday.

The England boxer wrote her name into New Astley Boxing Club history by becoming the club’s first senior national champion — and head coach O’Reilly was quick to dedicate the triumph to their former coach, who passed away in 2007.

“It was a fantastic weekend and Demie did really well,” he said. “For all the years John Humphrey was involved I’d like to dedicate it to him.

“He died very young and taught me everything I know. We’re a little club in a little town and the sky is the limit for us.

“The club has been around for 21 years and had schoolboys champions and junior ABA champions, but we’ve never had a senior national champion.

“I’m very, very proud of what Demie has done and I’m proud for the club as well.”

After receiving a bye in the quarter-finals, Resztan got her title bid under way with a second round TKO win over Army’s Kerry-Anne Aaron in the semi-finals on Saturday.

The other semi-final earlier in the day saw holder Dady beat Boston’s Adrianna Finch by a unanimous decision, with Resztan then setting up a rematch of last year’s final for the next day.

Dady won by split decision in the final 12 months ago, but Resztan avenged her narrow defeat to the Earlsfield boxer with an impressive display in Sunday’s final.

“Demie totally dominated the first round,” O’Reilly recalled.

“It was a little bit scrappy but she definitely done enough to win it.

“Tanya then got a warning for holding. Demie was all over her and it was in desperation.

“Demie got a warning for holding as well which evened it up, but the whole weekend she was excellent.

“It has been a hard slog to get there. Her attitude was fantastic towards training and she trained really hard, twice a day for the last six to eight weeks.”

The victory in Liverpool earned Resztan a spot in the GB 
Elite Three Nations in Scotland later this month, where the 19-year-old is set to represent England in the tournament.

And O’Reilly believes there is plenty more to come from the New Astley boxer in the months and years ahead.

“Demie is only just getting started,” he beamed. “She is only going to get better and better.

“A Welsh girl (Lynsey Holdaway) beat Demie in the Three Nations last year and I even said to her ‘what if you have to fight her again?’

“She said ‘I don’t care.’ Her confidence is so high at the moment.

“Now it’s a matter of Demie continuing to work hard in training.”