JEE Johal kept up the gold rush for Priory Park Boxing Club at the Monkstown Box Cup in their second annual visit to Ireland.

He was one of a six-strong fighting squad from the Dudley-based gym that made the trip to compete at the open tournament, writes Craig Birch.

They were joined by coaches Warren Davies, Peter Upton and Brian Gwilt at a competition where they had enjoyed success the previous year.

Josh Jeavons, Connor Jones and James Mongan all won gold in 2016, but only Jeavons would be involved this time around.

But it was Johal who turned out to be the golden boy, with Jeavons and Kian Palmer settling for silver. Joe Gwilt, Ben Collins and Rahmatullah Sher were all competitive, too.

Johal has come on leaps and bounds since switching from Wednesbury Boxing Club and has only lost once in Priory colours, that a national semi-final.

That solitary defeat last year came after winning the West Midlands title in what will now become the England Boys and Girls Championships this year.

He was entered at 60kg in the boxers born 2001 category at Monkstown by first defeating Michael Stokes, from Irish outfit Crumlin, in the semi-finals.

Johal started strong and held at him at bay to prevail on a points split decision and secure his place in the final.

He faced Hungary’s Richard Szollosi in a mirror image of his last four clash, taking the first two rounds and enduring a scrappy third and final session to have his hand raised on a split.

Jeavons couldn’t make it back-to-back Monkstown golds at 70kg in the 2001 ranks, losing the final to hometown entrant Adam Matthews unanimously.

He had beaten Kilnamanagh’s Chris Kumbu unanimously to set up the decider, with the Matthews affair a tight bout.

Palmer also won silver at 42kg (2003) and was only beaten by talented American Julius Ballo, from the Bomber Squad Academy in California.

That unanimous setback followed a split success over Scotland’s Colin Cairney, of Jonesy’s Boxing Club in Stirling, where he came from behind to get the decision.

Collins felt hard done to at 38kg (2004), after a split defeat to Monkstown’s Ryan Gill where he thought he’d performed enough to win.

Gwilt lost on a split at 54kg (2001) against James Conroy, from Galway’s Tobar Pheadair, while Sher was downed unanimously by Ethan Browne, of Gemini in Liverpool at 56kg (2000).

Trainer Davies said: “All of the lads boxed superbly and came away with their hands held high, they took on top international boxers and gave a good account of themselves.

“We had three golds last year but, if I’m honest, the guys this time had harder categories. Some have called it a ‘mini world championships’ and we can vouch for that.

“There were teams from all over the world and it certainly had an international feel, so it’s been a great experience for all involved.

“This is the best Box Cup for schoolboys and juniors, without a shadow of a doubt. It was well organised and there was some great boxing. We look forward to being involved again.”