From Dartford to California – Meet the young boxer who became national champion and now trains with former Pacquiao coach Freddie Roach

Credit: Joe Coshan – KMTV

An 11-year-old from Dartford has been training in America as he aims to fulfil his dream of becoming a professional fighter.

Tony Curtis, otherwise known as Lightning Junior, has picked up his first national title, winning the Amateur Boxing Alliance in the under 30 kilos category,

Despite only taking up the sport 14 months ago, Lightning won his first ever fight on points in three rounds.

He said: “I didn’t feel nervous on the night, I just felt like I always am.

“It was on the day that I was really nervous but once I started getting ready for the fight I was completely fine.

“I just got in the ring and done what I had to do.”

Curtis trains at the TUA Boxing Gym in Dartford under the stewardship of professional boxer Shaquille Day – who boasts an unbeaten 7-0 record.

And Day can already see the change in Tony since his first bout.

“Since the fight his mind-set is completely different and he knows what he’s got to do.

“From not having a fight to having a fight he’s a different fighter.

“Before he was just a kid trying to become a fighter, now he’s an actual fighter.”

It comes after his parents Tony Power and Samantha Curtis took their son out of school and made the decision to home-school him, so he could concentrate on boxing full-time.

His dad Tony missed his first fight and title win because he was organising a chance for Tony Jar to train in America.

Just weeks after his fight, the pair flew out to California, where Tony got the chance to train at the iconic Wildcard Boxing Gym, where Tony got the chance to spar with legendary coach Freddie Roach – former trainer of world champions Manny Pacquiao and Amir Khan.

Now the family plan to move Stateside to allow Lightning Junior to fulfil his dream of becoming a professional boxer.

Follow Tony’s journey to the top on his Instagram below:

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