A KEIGHLEY girl scored a convincing victory in a national boxing championship.

Seventeen-year-old, Sabaa Hussain, of Keighley, won in the finals of the England Boxing National Youth Development Championships 2021, held at the Spiceball Leisure Centre in Banbury, Oxfordshire.

She beat Keira Whitlock, of Liverpool, by a unanimous decision in the female under 46kg category at the event.

Sabaa has been boxing for Leroy “Sharky” Brown for two years at Sharkys ABC in Meanwood Road, Leeds.

Trainer Sharky has previously guided the early careers of fighters such as Nicola Adams and Josh Warrington.

With the support of her coaches, Sharky, Bobby, Vass and Linton, and members of her club at Sharkys ABC in Leeds, along with her family and friends, Sabaa was able to bring this title back home.

Sabaa said: “I’d just like to say thank you to everyone who has helped me get here, it means a lot and it just motivates me to go all the way.”

Sabaa’s father and mother, Arif Hussain and Noreen Nazir, said: “We are so happy Sabaa won her fight in the final on Sunday as she had worked so hard for it.”

Sabaa did extremely well considering she had Covid only a few weeks before the fight.

Her mum and dad said: “At the start of November, she contracted Covid-19 which meant she was unable to box properly for two weeks.

“She only had eight proper training sessions in the two weeks leading up to the fight, so we were quite worried about her health and if she would be able to take this fight.

“She showed grit and determination which led to her becoming the champion on her first attempt and only with three bouts. We are so proud of her.

“She is excited to get back in the gym and work even harder.”

Sabaa started boxing in 2019, and after not training for a year due to Covid, she got back into it when gyms were re-opened earlier this year.

“She’s always been interested in boxing,” said her sister Maryam Hussain. “She enjoys it a lot and trains three times a week.

“When she first started boxing they were surprised by her skill and she has improved her punching, footwork and defence.”