Sheffield boxer Dalton Smith, 18, is set to take the next major step in his development as he heads halfway across the world to compete in the 2015 Commonwealth
Youth Games in the south Pacific island of Samoa.
Smith is desperate to succeed in the same way Jessica Ennis Hill has. “What she does is amazing; she’s a great role model and someone I look up to. When training alongside her you can see how hard she works. Hopefully I can inspire kids like her one day” he posted on Facebook.
Dalton has been boxing since he was five years, his most significant England Boxing titles include the 2014 and 2015 Youth Champion, 2013 Junior Champion and 2011 Schools Champion. He also won Silver at the 2014 European Boxing Championships in Zagreb.
“It is a massive honour to be selected to represent my country at such a prestigious event, I can’t wait to get on the plane. I will be up against a lot of world-class talent in Samoa but I am feeling confident” he says.
“There is a good group of us boxers heading to Samoa and we have all received fantastic support from Team England. My club, Steel City Boxing Club, have also been very supportive, as has my Dad who is my coach. I hope to do them all proud in Samoa.”
The fifth Commonwealth Youth Games will take place in the Samoan capital city of Apia from 5-11 September.
England has attended all previous Commonwealth Youth Games, always finishing in the top three nations.
Around 1,000 athletes aged 14-18 will be competing for 107 gold medals in nine sports over five days of competition in Samoa.
Team England’s travelling delegation includes 60 athletes, representing eight sports (Archery, Athletics, Boxing, Lawn Bowls, Rugby 7s, Squash, Swimming and Weightlifting), plus coaching and support staff.
Some of England’s highest profile sports stars have appeared at the Commonwealth Youth Games including Ennis-Hill, Beth Tweddle, Danny Cipriani, Zoe Smith and James DeGale.