‘He had the potential to go very far in the sport’ – Josh Warrington’s tribute to Doncaster boxer killed in pub shooting
Tributes continue to pour in to a promising Doncaster boxer who was killed in a shooting at a pub.
Tom Bell, aged 21, was shot at the Maple Tree on the Woodfield Plantation, Balby, at around 8.45pm on Thursday.
A gun was fired through the pub window and Tom collapsed inside in a pool of blood.
The pub remains sealed off and under police guard this afternoon while CSI officers are at the scene.
Floral tributes have been left at the police cordon.
Leeds-based IBF World Champion Josh Warrington said: “Myself and the Leeds Warrior team are shocked and deeply saddened to hear the shocking news of Tom Bell.
“Such a naturally talented boxer who had the potential to go very far in the sport. A massive shame at such a young age.”
Doncaster’s District Commander, Chief Superintendent Shaun Morley, revealed this afternoon that the shooting was being treated as a ‘targeted’ attack.
He said: “From our enquiries and information it was almost undoubtedly a targeted attack and there is no additional risk to local residents.
“There will be concern about it and as a result we will be putting a significant number of uniformed resources into the community today and over the coming days.
“Our information suggests it was a targeted attack.”
Doncaster boxing trainer and promoter Stefy Bull said he was in ‘shock’ at the news.
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He added: “Absolutely heartbreaking to wake up to the terrible and shocking news of the death of Tom Bell. I’ve read shot dead in a drive-by shooting.
“What are our towns and villages coming to with knife and gun crime? This isn’t supposed to happen it’s stuff we see in movies. I’m in shock.
“Tom was just 21-year-old (a baby), his life ahead of him, he was a talented undefeated professional boxer and with the right guidance had the ability to go to the top.
“My good friend Jimmy Harrington loved this kid and tried his best to take him down the right path and believed in him so much. Together we were making plans to build his future in boxing.”
Star boxing writer Bob Westerdale commented: "My thoughts are with Tom's family and friends at such a tragic time. I am so, so sorry for them.
"This is a horrible and pointless waste of life. He would have had his 22nd birthday, next month.
"Tom hadn't boxed since September 2017 and had gone off the radar, a bit.
"But he had an unbeaten six-win record and had taken the scalp of a very good Sheffield fighter, Razaq Najib, in 2016.
"The boxing community will rally around as it always does - but what a terrible shame for all concerned."