By Colin MacGillivray
Though it may be ‘a little gym in Wallan’ in the words of boxing coach and owner Bryce Poorter, House of Stoush Boxing Academy punches above its weight on the national stage.
The gym sent 10 fighters to the recent National Golden Gloves boxing tournament in Queensland – billed as the largest boxing tournament ever in Australia with more than 550 entries from Australia, New Zealand and other Pacific nations – coming away with five winners and two runners-up.
Poorter said the results were a huge endorsement for the gym.
“It made us the second most successful gym in Australia,” he said.
“The top gym was a big one in Queensland, and they were a clear winner with 14 gold and two silvers, but for a little gym in Wallan to get five gold and two silvers is pretty good.”
It continued a successful run of results for House of Stoush after amateur Jesse James Bolt was crowned the Australian under 19 super lightweight champion in August.
Bolt made short work of his opponents at the Golden Gloves, stopping the New Zealand under 19 champion in the second round and defeating an opponent from Queensland in the final.
He was named best youth male across all weight divisions at the conclusion of the tournament.
His sister Victoria Bolt also claimed a Golden Gloves title in the 36kg women’s weight class.
Other House of Stoush winners were Danny Doolan, 92kg; Chris Conboy, 86kg masters division; and Jake DeBrincat, 40kg.
Nate Long was runner-up in the 38kg weight class, as was Santino Brigante in the 46kg class.
Poorter said Bolt and the other Wallan fighters encountered a more diverse range of opponents than at the recent national championships.
“Only state champions can go into the Australian championships, so you’ve got to be recognised as the state champion of your state first before you can nominate,” he said.
“For the Golden Gloves anyone can nominate and they’ve got a lot of overseas fighters as well. I think there were about 50 New Zealanders who fought in the Golden Gloves.”
Poorter described the tournament as ‘a proud moment’ for him and the gym, and said he hoped for more success when Bolt contested the International Boxing Association Youth World Men’s and Women’s World Championships in Spain in November.
By Colin MacGillivray