King of the Brits Edwards is Glasgow bound

Richmond and Twickenham Times: Raw power: Charlie Edwards beat Blane Hyland on a split decision en route to becoming the England National Finals flyweight champion Raw power: Charlie Edwards beat Blane Hyland on a split decision en route to becoming the England National Finals flyweight champion

Charlie Edwards is bound for the Commonwealth Games after being crowned England’s flyweight champion.

The 21-year-old triumphed at the England National Finals in Liverpool last weekend - and by beating GB squad team-mate Jack Bateson in Sunday’s final, he was also crowned GB’s number one in the weight division.

England selectors billed the finals as the litmus test for the Glasgow Games in July and Edwards is now in pole position to take the 52kg berth.

However, with Edwards being absent from the national finals (formerly the ABAs) for the past two years, and Bateson getting all the headlines in his absence, the Beddington boxer knew he had plenty to prove in Liverpool.

He said: “There were people doubting me ahead of the final so it’s great to go out there and show them what I am all about.

“I’ve been away from the ABAs because of the Olympic qualifiers and my connection with the World Series Boxing and all that time, no one connected with the England team had seen me box, they had only heard about me.

“Jack is the one getting the attention because he’s been winning in the ABAs, people were getting caught up in the hype about him, but I know if I had been there, I would have won.”

He added: “I knew I had the beating of him on Sunday and now I am number one in Great Britain, and I am buzzing.”

Although the England Team has not yet been officially announced, Edwards is already looking forward to the promise it brings and, moreover, the attention.

“I am really looking forward to the Games, I’ve gone through the Worlds, the Euros and the Olympic qualifiers so I have all that experience to fall back on,” he said.

“I have learned to box clever working with Brian O’Shaughnessy, and the Games are a great opportunity to broadcast myself ahead of hopefully one day going professional.”

En route to the National final, number one seed Edwards beat Shamin Khan (unanimous) and Blane Hyland (split).

And in the final, he had the measure of Bateson from the off.

He said: “I know a lot about Jack as we have sparred together. He’s come up to my weight division but he is very tall and he likes to stand high in fights.

“He likes it when someone comes into him, but I stayed calm and collected, nice and relaxed and instead of walking into him, I stayed low.

“Every time he overstretched to get me, I would counter attack and get in under him.”

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