Upsets in Commonwealth Games boxing trials
14 April 2014
BOXING: Queensland boxer Joseph Goodall caused a stunning upset
at the Commonwealth Games trials in Perth on Saturday night, beating the
highly-rated Willis Meehan for the super heavyweight gold medal.
Meehan, who plays rugby league for the Sydney Roosters, started the final a short-priced favourite, but struggled to deal with the speed of his much smaller opponent.
Goodall had defeated London Olympian Johan Linde to make the final and said he wasn't overwhelmed by the hype surrounding his opponent.
"Willis is such a great fighter, I knew I just had to do my own thing," Goodall said.
"Self belief is so important, and I really believed in myself this week."
New South Welshman Jai Opetaia won his third national 91kg title and, now aged 18, is hoping to build on his London experience in Glasgow later this year.
"I was just a kid then, I'm a much better boxer now," Opetaia said.
Another New South Welshman, 20-year-of Daniel Lewis, backed up his strong international form from 2013 with an impressive win over Tasmania's Luke Woods in the 69kg category.
But Tasmania had cause to celebrate when Jackson Woods won the 56kg title and Nick Cooney triumphed in the 60kg class.
The dream of Victorian twins Andrew and Jason Moloney to compete at a second consecutive Commonwealth Games came to an end, with Jason having his colours lowered by Jackson Woods.
Olympic hurdles gold medallist Sally Pearson inspired NSW boxer Shelley Watts in her win over two-time national champion Jessica Retallack in the 60 kilogram gold medal bout.
Retallack had dominated Watts throughout their boxing careers, so Watts turned to the Olympic hurdler for inspiration.
"I read Sally Pearson's book recently, and it really made a difference," Watts said.
"If I get on that plane to Glasgow, one of the first things I'm going to do is go up and thank Sally."
NSW teammate Kaye Scott was also celebrating a potential ticket to Glasgow after a dominant win over fellow NSW boxer Jessica Messina in the 75kg division.
And in the 51kg division 21-year-old Victorian Kristy Harris out pointed 19-year-old Queenslander Chernaka Johnson.
There were 13 finals on the last night of the selection trials and the selectors now have the task of picking 11 of the title holders to take to Glasgow.