Page 68 - The Rifles Bugle Autumn 2019
P. 68

We have had a successful year on the boxing front with a healthy mix of Novice A’s and B’s and Elite boxers. The team have boxed at inter-coy, unit, civilian and international level with mostly positive results.
After 2 RIFLES inter-coy boxing competition in July 2018 (run by Captain John Pepper) a squad was selected from the less experienced inter-coy boxers to add to the pool of our established boxers. We initially formed up as a team in September 2018 with twenty-one Riflemen (seventeen boxers, four coaches) under the guidance of Corporal Crookes, Corporal Haywood, Lance Corporal Bailey and Rifleman Redmond. The main effort for the coaches was for the less experienced boxers to gain much needed experience for the Babcock Army Major Unit Championship. The team deployed on a 2-week training camp to London, training in some of the capitals most famous gyms and getting some bouts
on civilian shows. The boxers gaining experience on West Ham Amateur Boxing Club (ABC), Belvedere ABC and Cwmbran ABC shows. The team have also boxed on some civilian shows in Northern Ireland, with the stand out bout being Rifleman Hill beating a five-times Irish national champion.
In January 2019 2 RIFLES boxing team were invited to box an RAF select team at RAF Brize Norton, a challenge that was accepted. The event was great for the boxers to gain experience and the night finished with a 3-3 draw. Due to the success of the RAF v 2 RIFLES event, we were invited back for a second fixture at RAF Digby in April, which again ended in a 3-3 draw! We’re hoping to do a fixture soon in Lisburn to return the gesture to the RAF team.
Whilst the battalion were deployed on Exercise ASKARI STORM the semi-final draw for the Babcock Major Unit Championship happened. The battalion were drawn away to 13 Air Assault Support Regiment Royal Logistic Corps (13 AASp Regt RLC) based in Colchester; a tough challenge against a very good team who were previous champions in 2017. The team, due to injuries to both our Cruis- erweight and Heavyweight, started the night 2-O down. The Riflemen bit down on their gumshields and won 4 of the 7 bouts on the night, however 13 AASp Regt RLC went through due to the 2-0 head start winning 5-4. Corporal Tabiwalu (Super Heavy) and Rifleman Moran (Light Welter) beat current RLC champions; Rifleman Dewhurst (Lightweight) and Lance Corporal Caws (Middleweight) also picked up wins. Rifleman Moran was awarded best boxer of the night for an outstanding performance against a bigger and undefeated RLC boxer.
We entered four boxers in to the Army Individual Championship in June 2019. Corporal “Big T” Tabiwalu won the Army Individual Championship at Super Heavy; this is some achievement as the final was only his 7th bout and his 7th win. This continues a good run of form in the competition where we had 2twoArmy Individual Champions in the 2018 competition. Corporal McKendry (Heavyweight) and Rifleman Hunt (Bantam) both crowned champions in June 2018.
2 RIFLES inter-coy boxing 2019 will take place in Lisburn on 25th July 2019. As above we’ll select boxers from the inter-coy boxing to be pulled through on to the battalion team. The current plan is to form the team again in September 2019 in preparation for 2019/2020 Babcock Army Major Unit Championship.
Captain Dave Bell
Quartermaster (Technical)
 Corporal Tabiwalau v 13 Air Assault Support Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps
Due to our commitments this year, 2 RIFLES were not able to play Battal- ion-level rugby. However Battalion players have still had a busy and successful season representing the Army Rugby Union, Army Under-23’s and Army 7s as well as our continued support to Infantry Rugby Union, Infantry Rugby League and Infantry 7s.
Corporal Lewis Bean continued to represent the Army and this season saw him sign for Premiership side Northampton Saints while continuing to support Battalion and Infantry rugby when possible. Lance Corporal Josh Hartley made his Army A debut this season in a hard-fought 22-29 loss against Cambridge University. The second row has impressed during the inter-Corps season and is hoping to continue with his development and gain further Army caps in the coming year. LCpl Adam Beagle has become the latest 2 RIFLES player to be selected to represent the Army at U23s level. The prop who only started playing rugby a couple of years ago and impressed while playing for the Infantry, was rewarded with his selection for all the Army’s inter-services games.
The Battalion have continued to support Infantry Rugby with players and coaches contributing to the re-emergence of Infantry Rugby Union. The seasons highlights included a 50-13 victory over the RAF Regiment in the inaugural Ground Close Combat Cup and an Infantry squad being selected to train with the Japan national 7s team ahead of the Twickenham 7s.
To round off an excellent season Lance Corporal Domonikibau was included in the Army
7s squad for Super
Series 7s season. He
recently competed at the Bournemouth 7s and will continue to represent the Army throughout the summer.
The Battalion are back in ARU Championship North as of September 2019 and are looking to build on this year’s successful seasons with Army and Infantry Rugby. Serjeant Mark Elliot Assistant Intelligence Officer
  Lance Corporal Beagle in action for the Army U23s v the Navy U23s

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