Croydon boxer in Olympics semi-finals

Credit: Boxing AIBA (Flickr)

Buatsi at a Rio test event in 2015. Credit: Boxing AIBA (Flickr)

The Croydon school where the Olympic medal-winning boxer Joshua Buatsi studied spoke today (August 15) of their pride in his achievements and revealed he visited them before heading to Rio.

The Ghanian-British boxer is guaranteed a medal after his victory in the quarter-finals of the light-heavyweight category, scoring 30 points to 26 against Algerian boxer Abdelhafid Benchabla.

Buatsi attended Edenham High School in Shirley, Croydon from 2004 to 2009.

David Webb, the deputy headteacher at Edenham High, told East London Lines of how “immensely proud” he is to see Buatsi compete at the Rio Olympics.

He said: “The school is very proud of Josh. From the age of 14 he was very focused on sports and religion which helped him focus in his life.”

Buatsi has stayed in contact with the school ever since he left in 2009. Buatsi visits the school on a regular basis and even came to see his teachers before he went to Rio.

The school’s headteacher explained that this goes back to Buatsi’s “responsibility to come back to school”.

“He is a great lad, very humble,” Webb added.

When asked about what he thinks of a former student of his reaching the semi-finals at the Olympics, Webb said: “None of us are surprised, we are delighted to see him go this far. He is a focused determined young man.

“He’s got every chance to win.”

Buatsi will fight Kazakhstan’s Adilbek Niyazymbetov on Tuesday which will then decide who will go on to the finals on Thursday.

After winning, 23-year-old Buatsi said: “Man, I need to go back home, get changed and then it will sink in.

“But we go again, I think in two days’ time, and the aim is to change the colour but I am grateful for that, forever grateful. I didn’t expect it to happen.”

Earlier the Team GB boxer spoke about meeting American former boxer Floyd Mayweather, saying: “He [Mayweather] said to me he had heard about me before I got here and that I was a great fighter, a future world champion.

“It was good to hear that from someone like Mayweather, who I think is the greatest boxer of our generation.

“I want to dominate in every way I can, and I want more than bronze. I will give it everything that I’ve got to make sure I get a gold.”




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