‘Greedy’ Lewis Williams was more than happy to fly the flag for English boxing after claiming his country’s first boxing gold of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
The 23-year-old produced an accomplished display over three rounds to defeat Samoan Ato Plodzicki-Faoagali in their men’s heavyweight final at a bouncing NEC.
Williams won every single round on all three judges’ scorecards for an emphatic unanimous points decision, having also won his three previous fights in comfortable fashion.
And after watching three of his England teammates lose in their final matches earlier in the day, Williams admitted his main priority was to deliver on his promise of a gold medal.
“It is a bit annoying that I am the only one but I’m glad I could win the gold for everyone and the team. That is the nature of the sport, everything is down to yourself,” he said.
“You just have to have confidence in yourself and be greedy. I would love to have the whole team winning gold, but that is just the way it is.
“I felt good during the fight, I felt still had a few more levels to get to. I could have made it even easier by keeping up my range, using my feet some more.”
This summer, Team England, supported by funding raised by National Lottery players, comprises of over 400 athletes, all vying for medal success.
Williams’ success sees him follow in the illustrious footsteps of Leamington boxing legend Randolph Turpin, who became world champion after beating Sugar Ray Robinson in 1951.
It’s a history that Williams is all too aware of as he looks to forge his own path.
“It’s huge, everyone still knows the story of Randolph and the rest of the Turpins. I’m just carrying it on and bringing in some more medals for the town,” he added.
The high-flying Leamington fighter quickly turned his attention to catching up with his family post-fight, including his dad who only recently got out of hospital.
“I haven’t seen them yet. I’ll be nipping over in a bit, and I’ll go and put the medal round him, and see how he is,” continued Williams, who trains at Cleary’s Boxing Gym.
“He’s out of hospital, at home. He’s being pampered by my mum and sister. I’ve been getting videos sent through of him with a beer in hand, so he’s sweet.”
When asked whether Paris 2024 was next in his sights, Williams’ answer was emphatic.
“Definitely,” he said. “Everything is just building up. I’m building experience and then eventually taking it on to the pro game. I’m just going to keep learning and take it from there.”
But unlike Scotland’s hat-trick of boxing gold medal winners, who are planning a holiday abroad next week, Williams has not yet decided how he is going to celebrate his success.
“I’m not sure yet, I haven’t got anything booked. Just some rest, that’s all I need. Might have to get a few of the lads out fishing. I could treat myself and do a bit of travelling.”
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