The Bay of Plenty Boxing Association had one of the smaller teams competing at the Boxing New Zealand 2019 National Championships last week but they did not let that hold them back.
Of the four who competed, all from Tauranga Boxing Club, two claimed national titles. Ariane Nicholson won the Women's 69kg and Michelle Nuku won the Women's 60kg.
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Hannah Walker produced a valiant effort during her first time in the Youth division. She progressed to the Youth Women's 64kg final on Saturday but went down 4-1 to Leonie Rosin of the Central North Island.
The fourth member of the team Bryce Raynes was up against it in a highly competitive Men's Welterweight 69kg division. His tournament was over early as he was forced to withdraw through injury in his opening day bout against Auckland's Wendell Stanley.
Speaking the day after her win in the final, Nicholson said the fact she was a national champion had "not really sunk in yet".
"It's incredible, it's amazing. I just stick to my game plan that I have with my coach - good solid pressure. I always stick to that game plan, I don't try to fight their fight or anything like that.
"[The atmosphere] was really, really good. We're one of the smallest teams that go away so it's quite good to see the camaraderie of all the other teams getting together - the chants and everything that go on. There was a really good display of sportsmanship."
She was equally excited to see her teammate Nuku claim victory.
"Go Michelle, I was more excited for her than myself. I'm so proud of her, she's been training hard and she's fought hard all year too so she really deserves that win."
Nicholson's result makes it 12 consecutive victories but she said her overall record was not something she focused on.
"My coach was saying that last night but I don't really keep track of all of that so it kind of surprised me. It's an incredible thing but I'm kind of always focused on the next thing so it blew my mind when he told me that."
She now waits to find out if she has done enough for a place in the Asia/Oceania Olympic qualifying tournament, to be held in China in February 2020.
"There's a few things in the pipeline so it's just waiting and seeing I guess. We'll be ready for anything. It's not too early [to think about Olympic qualification] and I'm always ready for it but it's just waiting to see if I get that email or phone call saying 'pack your bags'."
All four athletes are coached by Chris Walker who said it was pleasing to see two women who had put in an exceptional amount of work claim titles.
"Both are really deserving and they had to fight for it, two hard fights each, and they got good results. The hard work paid off and things went to plan so I'm really happy for them.
"Michelle went in confident, her confidence was actually really high and she managed to put everything together at the right time. She put the work in, she has some good skills and she was able to really utilise those with the confidence and composure she showed."
Walker said his daughter Hannah could have done with a warm-up fight ahead of nationals after taking a year off but he was happy with the effort she put in.
"She ended up losing on a split decision and I actually thought she was a little bit unlucky to be quite fair, that's not just me being biased, but you just have to suck it up and keep moving forward.
"I thought she did okay, it was a little bit messy and untidy, she's quite a tidy boxer, but she showed a lot of determination in that fight and her fitness was good as well. It is a good learning experience."
Bay of Plenty boxers' results at nationals final day
Women's 60kg: Michelle Nuku (BOP) beat Alina Peach (Auckland) 4-1.
Women's 69kg: Ariane Nicholson (BOP) beat Mel McGlynn (Canterbury) 5-0.
Youth Female 64kg: Leonie Rosin (CNI) beat Hannah Walker (BOP) 4-1.