IT was a grim trip to Russia for the  British Lionhearts on February 12. At the “Wings of the Soviets” Sports Palace in Moscow the GB team lost all five bouts in their match against a set of national champions that formed the Russian Boxing Team.

Sam Maxwell was unfortunate to find himself behind after the first round with Vitaly Dunaytsev. But then, boxing out of character, Sam got drawn into a scrap with the wild Russian. A frustrating night for the Liverpudlian who lost a unanimous decision to Dunaytsev after five rounds.

“He was just waiting on the counter and throwing everything he could into hooks. I knew what I was supposed to be doing. I was supposed to be feinting, letting him throw them and countering. I just couldn’t get going,” Sam sighed afterwards. “I need to work on my jab a bit more, make it sharper… Everything I got told not to do before, I was doing.“

International newcomer Dan Woledge went in with a strong and far more experienced operator, Petr Khamukov. The Russian toppled the youngster over with a left hook. Woledge, still open to hard shots, was promptly withdrawn by his corner.

Light-flyweight Ashley Williams lost his third consecutive World Series of Boxing contest, going in with World silver medallist Vasili Egorov. Too much for Williams, the swift southpaw dropped the Welshman in the last round and won widely on the scorecards.

Russia’s Evgeny Tishchenko outscored Aboulaye Diane and the other foreign signing on the Lionhearts team, Enrico La Cruz also lost on points to Vladimir Nikitin.

It only gets harder for the Britons. Their next match in the World Series of Boxing is against Cuba in Havana on February 20.

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