Boxing: Summer is one out of the box

By Greg Taipari

She maybe sweet 16 but Summer Lake is anything but sweet every time she steps into the boxing ring.

It was the Rotorua Girls' High School student's birthday yesterday and the youngster celebrated the special day by getting up at 5.30am to go boxing training, she then went to school before returning to the boxing gym for her afternoon training.

The Year 12 is one of three fighters, with Roxaine Halkett-Duff and Moana Tahuriorangi, from the Rotovegas Boxing Gym selected for a New Zealand age-group boxing team to travel to Kazakhstan to compete in an international tournament.

On Saturday Summer and six fighters from the club will head up to Whangarei to fight in a local tournament.

Joining Summer will be Halkett-Duff, Ricaia Warren, Te Arohana Takahi, Karenga Bennett and Levi Pedersen. Tahuriorangi won't be fighting due to a foot injury.

Rotovegas Boxing Gym coach Aaron Warren said the tournament was a good opportunity for the likes of Summer to get some much wanted ring time for the two fighters.

He said the youngster had been doing a lot of training outside of the ring.

Despite the long hours of training, Warren said she didn't complain once.

"She's the sort of girl who is going to go a long way. She's fearless when she gets into the ring.

"Summer has fought against fighters with a lot more experience. She fought a 27-year-old when she was only 14," Warren said.

She has a big heart and I believe she will go long way in this sport.

"I can see her winning a medal at the Olympics one day, She's got a good attitude."

An orthodox fighter, Summer has a devastating left hook but has knockout power in both hands which has a number of her opponents quaking in their boots every time she steps into the ring.

Warren said thanks to the likes of First Sovereign Trust who funded a boxing in schools programme, it raised the awareness of talented youngsters like Summer.

Although a date for the Kazakhstan tournament is yet to be set, it is expected to be held around November.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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