Rising star of the boxing ring, Chesterfield teenager Jade Ashmore, has covered herself in glory at her first major senior tournament.
For 18-year-old Jade picked up a silver medal at the finals of 129th England Boxing National Championships, which were held at the Echo Arena in Liverpool last weekend.
In the 51g weight category, Jade made it through the quarter-finals and semi-finals with victories by unanimous decisions on Friday and Saturday before tackling the final on Sunday.
She just came up short, but was far from disgraced against an opponent, Lisa Whiteside, who is the five-times national champion. In contrast, the bout was only the fifth in Jade’s entire career. In fact, she won her first senior fight only last month.
The national championships provide a perfect opportunity for up-and-coming boxers to showcase their talent. Jade represents Chesterfield Amateur Boxing Club (ABC), but is also on the elite programme at Bradford College. Last year, she secured the top result for any female athlete in the history of the college when she won a bronze medal at the European Youth Championships in Hungary.
Now the teenager is hoping to build on her successes as she strives towards winning a place in the British boxing squad for the 2020 Olympic Games, which are to be held in Tokyo, Japan. Her hopes were boosted considerably recently when she was selected for the England boxing team for the second successive year.
Jade, who comes from Heath, has been regarded as one of the brightest sporting prospects in Derbyshire for some time now.
She says: “I first started boxing just to keep fit. But when I was asked to go into the ring and spar, I really enjoyed it.
“From then on, I decided to get registered with the Chesterfield club and have some competitive bouts. I train six days a week, and I never get tired of it because there is always something new to learn. My coaches put a lot of time and effort into training me.”
Last year, Jade, a former pupil at Tupton Hall School, was also named young sportswoman of the year at North-East Derbyshire Council’s annual sports awards and received an annual pass to use the council’s leisure facilities.
On behalf of England Boxing, chief executive Paul Porter said: “The award was testament to Jade’s talent and dedication. It was thoroughly deserved, and I am looking forward to watching her progress in the coming years.”
Chesterfield ABC was established back in 1979 and has about 50 members, aged from nine to 40.
Bradford College, which has 25,000 students from across the country, prides itself on its boxing academy.