Boxing sensation Jade Ashmore is celebrating a brilliant bronze medal at the European Women’s Junior and Youth Championships in Hungary.
The 16-year-old who comes from Heath and fights for Chesterfield Amateur Boxing Club, did magnificently well to reach the semi-finals of the tournament, which was held in Keszthely.
But there, she came up against last year’s European gold medallist, Valaria Manchak, of Ukraine, a tall, tricky southpaw with a long reach.
From an early stage in the bout, Manchak realised that she couldn’t match Jade for strength and decided to box her on her back foot and counter attack.
It resulted in an extremely close contest, and with her opponent on the defensive, Jade found it difficult to catch her. She had fought only one southpaw before and at the end of the four rounds, she was edged out in a unanimous decision.
Nevertheless the Chesterfield boxer was still delighted with her achievement.
“She was not fazed by the defeat at all,” said mum Stella. “She was still over the moon to be ranked third in Europe and took all her bouts as a good learning curve.
“She will now be having a couple of days off before returning to training for the Golden Girls Box Cup in Sweden in November.
“Her club, family and friends are all very proud of her. She will be starting her final year at Bradford College in September on the elite boxing course, and she is currently looking for sponsors to help with all her travel expenses.”
To reach the semi-finals in Hungary, Jade pulled off terrific victories over Alya Valizada, of Azerbaijan, and then Katja Springer, of Germany.
She took on Valizada in the preliminary round and although she only got the verdict on a split decision, mum Stella reckoned her commanding performance meant she should have won it unanimously.
“There was some harsh judging for the Brits all week,” said Stella. “Some very bad decisions.”
The win took Jade into the quarter-finals, where she came up against Dresden’s Springer Looking strong from the opening round, she had the German on the canvas with a solid back-hand.
Springer recovered and lasted all four rounds, but Jade was again the victor on a split decision to guarantee at least a bronze medal.
Remarkably, Jade was one of five members of the Team England boxing squad to lose in the semis in Keszthely. The others were Ebonie Jones, who lost to Armenian ace Anush Grigoryan, Chantelle Reid, who suffered a shock reverse, and up-and-coming juniors Georgia O’Connor and Ivy-Jane Smith.
However, a spokesman for Chesterfield ABC said: “Jade has gained so much from the whole experience in Hungary. We can’t wait to see her medal!”