Gemma Richardson marks 21st birthday by boxing her way into the Commonwealth semi-finals

·2-min read
Gemma Richardson marks 21st birthday by boxing her way into the Commonwealth semi-finals

By Josh Graham at the NEC, Birmingham

Boxer Gemma Richardson pressed pause on her birthday celebrations despite making the Commonwealth Games semi-finals on the day she turned 21.

The Scunthorpe slugger has guaranteed that she will take home at least a bronze medal after a comprehensive points victory over the Isle of Man’s Jade Burden in their lightweight quarter final.

However, the champagne is still on ice, and she will not be having a party unless it’s to celebrate becoming the new Commonwealth champion with India’s Jaismine Lamboria her semi-final opponent on Saturday.

Richardson said: “There’s not a better present you can have, few people have got a Commonwealth medal on their 21st birthday which makes it even more special than it already is.

“It’s going to be a gold medal celebration. There’s still business to be done, the birthday celebrations are going to have to wait.

“You’ve got to be confident, I’m not here for a bronze, I’m here to get better and If I perform, I can beat anyone on my day.

“The game plan going in there was always going to be like my last performance. Stick to my strengths, use my feet and my boxing brain and try to get the win that way and I’m lucky enough that I executed it well.”

Richardson is relishing the barmy Birmingham atmosphere at the NEC and hopes the home support can fire her past Lamboria, who she has previously fought in sparring.

The fact Richardson is even competing in Birmingham is a miracle after an elbow injury sustained at the start of the year was meant to keep her out for the whole of 2022.

But now she is relishing the barmy Birmingham atmosphere at the NEC and hopes the home support can fire her past Lamboria, who she has previously fought in sparring, and into the gold medal match.

Richardson added: “I love fighting in front of this crowd. Every day they keep performing. It’s so close to the feeling of the Olympics.

“The atmosphere never dies down in the ring, and it gives you that little push.

“We had a training camp in Ireland, and I sparred her [Lamboria] but we will make a game plan with the coaches and worry about that on Saturday.”

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