Published: 10/02/2018 06:00 - Updated: 09/02/2018 12:48

Moray boxer goes from 'chunky' to champ

Scott Edwards, left with Ben Fail who be defeated to win the Scottish Novice Championships at heavyweight division
Scott Edwards, left with Ben Fail who be defeated to win the Scottish Novice Championships at heavyweight division
THREE years after taking up boxing and 15 kilos lighter, Scott Edwards is a three-time Scottish champion.

The Keith heavyweight joined Elgin Boxing Club to get in shape and has since knocked out a series of rivals in his quest for glory.

On Saturday the distillery worker beat Glasgow rival Ben Fail in the final of the Scottish intermediate championships to retain the gold medal he won a year earlier.

Having already claimed a Scottish novice title victory, Edwards (22) is working his way up the levels and gaining a reputation as a boxer of considerable talent.

"I got into boxing to try and get fit. I used to be quite into my weights but I was chunky as well," he said. "It certainly wasn't all muscle, I was about 106 kilos.

"I got involved in a sparring session and ever since then I've had this drive to get better at boxing.

"Now I'm 91 kilos and I'm glad I took it up."

Edwards will join Elgin team-mate Andrew Smart in competing at the Scottish Open Championships next month.

He won his latest national glory over two weekends, beginning with two bouts at the Ravenscraig sports centre in Motherwell.

Fighting at 91 kilos, he was drawn against Cameron Garden (Kirkintilloch BC) and used his height and physical advantage to quickly put his rival under pressure. Landing straight jabs and hooks to the body and head, Edwards soon had Garden on the back foot, and was rightly given a unanimous decision by the judges.

Next opponent Joeli 'Joe' Nakavuelevu, a Fijian-born former super heavyweight boxer who came down a weight, was someone who Edwards' corner knew could pack a punch, but also liked to box at one pace.

Edwards set off at a ferocious pace working from long to medium range to avoid Nakavuelevu's big bombs, some of which landed but the Elgin boxer was ahead at the end of the first.

His uppercuts and hooks to the body had great effect in the second and by round three Nakavuelevu received several cautions for his head being low. Again Edwards was declared winner unanimously.

Last Saturday's final held at the Boxing Scotland High Performance Centre in Glasgow, saw Edwards' opponent ben Fail on home soil as he boxes for the Glasgow Phoenix club.

This time Fail came out flying out and pushed the Elgin boxer onto the back foot with straight punches to the head, before holding on to smother Edwards' work. Back came the Keith man to counter and land left hooks and then drive his opponent back with stinging right hands to the head.

One of these caused a standing count and then just before the bell rang to end the round, a four-punch combination rocked Fail's head back, leading to another eight count.

The end was nigh, and just 30 seconds into round two Edwards' punch accuracy was too much as the ref stopped the bout to make the Moray man champion.

"It felt just the same as it did when I won it the last time," said Edwards on retaining his crown. "I just felt on top of the world."

So many heavyweight boxers rely on their brute force to win their battles in the ring but Keith's very own champ believes he has different methods at his disposal. "I think my strength is my work rate. For a heavier weight I try to outwork the guy as well as outbox him."

The Chivas engineering maintenance man trains six days a week including three sessions at Elgin with head coach Paul 'Ratch' Gordon, father of the club's star female boxer Megan who has just won a place at this year's Commonwealth Games.

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