About four years ago, I trained at Ham Amateur Boxing Club and was fortunate enough to be warmly taken into a local boxing fraternity, whose aim was to promote fitness, self-defence and confidence.
Unfortunately the club closed down, but one of the senior instructors who used to put us all through our paces, Ben Young, now heads up Two Kings boxing club in New Malden. As an ex-amateur boxer who started training at the age of nine in the same gym Ricky Burns used to in Scotland, Ben’s love for the sport is unparalleled.
When I called up Ben to say I’d like to do a feature on the club, the first thing he said was, ‘Bring your boxing gear’. I replied, ‘Great!!’. At the time of writing this article, my muscles are still aching.
I arrived about ten minutes early and there was already a string of people waiting outside. About 10 minutes later, the club was buzzing. There was a magnetizing sound of bags being hit, speed and wall to ceiling balls bouncing around and three instructors to make sure that nobody escaped a few rounds on the pads. As far as boxing clubs goes – it has it all. The equipment, the tutors and that all important hungry atmosphere.
When I asked Ben who was welcome to the club, here was his response.
“Everyone. Doesn’t matter what your ability is or how fit you are. There’s always room to improve. Boxing training can help reduce weight, get you off the streets and also help you get fit after an operation. The club is also a great social hub. People make friends and earn respect between themselves.”
Between Ben, Billy Day, Joe Ackary and Luke Moran, I can say, from first hand experienced, whoever steps through the gym’s doors are in good hands.
For many in the local area, if it were not for Two Kings, they openly admit that their lives may have taken different routes. Welterweights Macaroni Tony and Danny ‘The Nightmare’ Nwaogwugwu, who both fight on Saturday (25th July) at the York Hall, share with us their experience of the club.
Tony commented, “Where else would we go if we weren’t here? Boxing is something to put your energy into. You focus on your boxing and getting into trouble disappears. It develops you physically and as a person. You can only benefit from the training”
Danny added, “I’ve only been boxing for a year, and Ben’s already had me boxing for a belt and fighting at the York Hall. That’s all down to Two Kings. We’ve all been in trouble before, but since I’ve been in boxing I haven’t had a blink of trouble.”
The only downside of my visit was that finances are now potentially threatening the longevity of the club. The ethos of the club is not to make a profit, simply to break even on rent and associated costs every month, but making ends meet are now becoming an uphill struggle. If you are interested to sponsor Two Kings either financially, or to help pay for merchandise or equipment, please contact Ben on 07534 918 019 or look up Two Kings on Facebook. The club is located on 248 Kingston Road, New Malden, KT3 3RN and training is on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday (5pm – 8pm), and Sunday mornings. One to one’s are also available during the day. I strongly recommend a visit…