PUNCHING plumber Jake Dodd showed he had plenty in the tank by defeating one of the country’s top boxers.
The Coleg Cambria student produced a stunning comeback to beat Team GB’s Will Cawley at the Great Britain Amateur Championships in Sheffield.
The 24 year-old, from Wrexham, only took up the sport in 2016 but has already made great strides in achieving a 12-3 record and is now Welsh, Tri-Nation and British titleholder.
The defeat of Cawley means he will be assessed for a funded place on Team GB or turn professional later this year.
If selected Jake would be in the mix to try and claim a spot at the next Commonwealth Games, or even the Olympics.
All of this while balancing his studies in Plumbing and Gas Engineering at Cambria’s Bersham Road site.
The 52kg (flyweight) slugger, who counts Mike Tyson, George Kambosos and Roy Jones Jr among his pugilistic idols, could not have hoped for a better start to his boxing career.
“To have come this far in just four years is amazing, I owe a lot to my trainers Clive Doran, Kevin Unsworth and everyone at Shotton ABC,” said Jake.
“I used to be a gymnast and then a bodybuilder but never felt truly fit until I started hitting the heavy bag and joined a boxing gym.
“I’ve put in a lot of hard work and am starting to reap the rewards.”
He added: “To win this fight against one of their top guys having had a point taken off me was amazing; I’m still buzzing and can’t wait to get back in the ring.”
Jake’s first taste of the amateur game was the Welsh Novice Championships in Cardiff, where he won two bouts to become champion.
Spells at Brymbo and Llay brought about more victories, before he joined Shotton and Clive – father of successful amateur and professional boxer Tom Doran – and moved up another level.
“It’s going to be an exciting few months as I wait to find out when I’m assessed and whether they will select me for Team GB,” said the former Ysgol Clywedog pupil.
“It’s is an amazing opportunity, but whatever the outcome I will be looking to eventually turn professional and see how I get on in the paid ranks.”
He added: “To have plumbing and gas engineering as a trade to fall back on is also very important to me, and I would like to thank Coleg Cambria for all of their support.
“I’ve got the qualifications in education, now I have to go and qualify in the ring!”
Lecturer James Borman said all of the students and staff at Bersham Road are proud of Jake’s achievements, adding: “To see him doing something he loves and being so successful is just incredible.
“Jake works as hard in the classroom as he does in the gym and the ring, so he deserves to go on to great things.”
For more information on the wide range of courses at Coleg Cambria, visit www.cambria.ac.uk