Nairn fighter spars with boxing world champion
Jacobite Boxing Club’s Jemma Cameron had the opportunity of a lifetime last weekend as she was invited to spar with Scotland’s first female world champion Hannah Rankin.
Rankin won a unanimous decision against Sarah Curran for the IBO super welterweight title in June, and is preparing for a WBC interim title fight against Swedish boxer Patricia Berghult at the end of November.
The world class fighter shares much of her coaching team with Luca Micheletti, son of the Nairn club’s head coach Bobby Russell.
So when 29-year-old Rankin was looking for someone to help her out in training, Cameron got the call.
“It was nerve-wracking to say the least, but it was such an amazing experience,” Cameron said.
“It’s something that can only benefit me, I’m just a novice boxer, so it was just amazing.
“Obviously there are levels and levels between us, but there’s always something to learn when you’re in the boxing ring.
“You don’t just go in there and try to knock each other out, because then neither of you learn anything. I worked on moving mostly, because I did not want to get caught with any of her shots, and then trying to land a few of my own.
“It was good for both of us, we both came out with a bit of a sweat on.”
Cameron has a good record in the ring, winning six of her seven fights in her two-year career so far.
The 31-year-old has family commitments that make a crack at going professional unlikely, but she is keeping an open mind over her prospects in the sport.
“I just want to see how far I can get,” she explained.
“I have three kids at home, so I can’t really commit to being able to go professional, but there’s the Scottish Championships coming up in November and we’ve got a few from Jacobite going down.”
Sparring with a world champion is not a bad way to prepare for any competition, but Cameron reckons the main benefits will be mental.
“The big thing will be confidence in the ring, you really can’t go in there with any doubts,” she added.
“There’s no time for that when someone’s trying to punch you in the face.”