Sheffield boxer Nicola Adams to begin defence of Olympic gold medal

Nicola Adams
Nicola Adams
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Sheffield-based boxer Nicola Adams is to begin the defence of her Olympic gold medal today.

The 33-year-old, who is part of the GB boxing team which trains at the English Institute of Sport in Attercliffe, won gold at the London Olympics in 2012 and will begin her campaign for a second when she faces Ukraine's Tetyana Kob.

Nicola, from Leeds, almost slipped through the net when she was injured on the day of trials for the first batch of women boxers to be selected to train for London 2012.

She had a back injury when GB's boxing performance director, Rob McCracken, held trials in Sheffield seven years ago.

McCracken said: "When Nicky first came to Sheffield in 2009 to try out for the programme she was ill and sat on a chair and just watched the others.

"I told the doctor I couldn't put her on the programme unless she did something, and I was about to send her home.

"There were other girls there working hard and it wouldn't have been fair on them.

"The doctor asked me to wait and give him one month to get her right. The first thing she was able to do was shadow-box and even when she just did that we could see she had real talent.

"We added her to the programme in 2010 and she has been a delight."

Adams said: "I never underestimate any of my opponents because the average fighter can turn into a world-beater when they get in the ring with the likes of me.

"They've got nothing to lose, they're the underdog and I have to keep that in mind. The quality of women's boxing is improving all the time and it is definitely keeping me on my toes."

If Adam wins gold again she will become the first British boxer to retain an Olympic title for 92 years.