Three boxing golds on offer for Britain's men

Three boxing golds on offer for Britain's men
By Eurosport

11/08/2012 at 07:17Updated 11/08/2012 at 08:03

Nicola Adams set the bar high for the British boxing team with a momentous gold medal on Thursday and 24 hours later the men responded with three of them battling through to finals as the host nation enjoys its best Olympic tournament since 1956.

Adams raised the roof at the ExCel when she became the first woman to win an Olympic medal in a boxing ring.

The feel-good factor rubbed off on Luke Campbell, Freddie Evans and Anthony Joshua on Friday as they all moved to within nine minutes of gold medals.

Campbell put himself in the frame to emulate Adams when he beat Japan's Satoshi Shimizu in the bantamweight semi-final and although Anthony Ogogo will have to settle for a bronze after losing to Brazil's Esquiva Falcao Florentino in the middleweight class, a busy day in London's Docklands ended on a high.

Evans edged a tight welterweight bout against Ukraine's world number one Taras Shelestyuk 11-10 and Joshua then raised the decibel level in the arena with a 13-11 victory over Ivan Dychko of Kazakhstan, drawing blood from his opponent's nose with some thunderous punches.

One of Britain's coaches Lee Pullen said Adams's victory the previous night had inspired the team.

"We had a team meeting and Nicola got a standing ovation, she gave us all a little lift," Pullen said after Campbell set up a final against Ireland's John Joe Nevin, who defeated world champion Lazaro Alvarez Estrada of Cuba 19-14 in the earlier semi-final..

"She told them all what a great feeling it was and I think they thought they all wanted a bit of that now."

Nevin said compatriot Katie Taylor's victory in front of a huge Irish crowd had inspired the rest of the team.

"We're still not done yet, I've still got to go out and get the gold but to see Katie yesterday was amazing, to see her do so well," Nevin, twice a bronze medallist at the world amateur championships, said.

"No one deserves it more than her, the commitment she has and the work she puts in. She's been inspiring to see."

Ogogo's dream of gold after a traumatic build-up to the Games faded against the stylish Falcao.

The 23-year-old's participation at his first Olympics was in doubt after a serious shoulder injury last year. He has also had to contend with his mother Theresa having a brain haemorrhage.

"I am devastated. I am really sad about it," he said, while glancing up at the television screen to watch the other semi-final.

"In a few months time I might be happy, but I'm not at the moment. Getting to the Olympics was an ordeal for me and then I had a tough draw."

It was a different story for Evans, however.

"To beat the world champions. It's unbelievable. I'm on such a high and I can't describe it," he said.

"I stuck to my game plan and it worked out perfectly.

Evans will face Serik Sapiyev of Kazakhstan in Sunday's final while Joshua, who was watched by Britain's former Olympic super heavyweight champion Audley Harrison, takes on Italy's Roberto Cammarelle.