The past two issues of Call Sign have detailed the progress of Sam Bezzina, son of Dial-a-Cab driver, Dean Bezzina (M10), and his ambition to box for England. To do that, he needed to win a Golden Gloves Championship. Two victories – the second while suffering from an infection - saw him through to the final. A win here would see him qualify not just for an England place, but also the chance of future Olympic glory.
   And he did it! It was national title glory for the Newham BC boxer when the ABA Schoolboys Championship honours were decided at Dagenham’s Goresbrook Leisure Centre. Liam Etheridge, from Walsall's Pleck BC, supplied the opposition for Sam Bezzina in the Class Three 48kg final and the talented rivals produced a high standard final at the two-day Royal Navy sponsored tournament.
But it was Sam who had the edge with his effective punching in the opening session, staying on top until the final round, when the powerful midlands' hopeful made a desperate attempt to turn the bout his way.
The judges gave the verdict toSam with an 8-5 score in his favour. Whilst the score reflected
Sam is now qualified to fight for England. Will he make London 2012
Sam is now qualified to fight for England. Will he make London 2012

 a clear winner, it certainly did not reflect the amount of leather thrown. This was a hard fought contest with both fighters realising how much was at stake. Following the final round, Sam was awarded the national title and a pair of Golden Gloves.
   To win a national title is a great achievement for Sam and also means he has achieved yet another of his goals - to box for his country. Sam will now be very busy training over the next eight weeks in preparation for the Three Nation’s, which will be held in Stranraer (Scotland) from 12th June to 14th June this year. Sam has also been selected to attend a days training camp at the Royal Naval base in Plymouth, where he will receive a day’s
coaching from the best of the RN boxing team and put through his paces by their physical training instructors. Sam will also be in action at the Circus Tavern in Essex on the 15 May 2009 when Newham ABC will be holding their annual dinner show.
   This will prepare him for the Three Nation’s where Sam will proudly represent his country for the first time and hopefully get his first gold medal whilst wearing an England vest. If Sam continues to develop and perform well, he will be ideally placed for all the right people to see him if he is to achieve his ultimate goal of representing England in the Olympics. Sam knows he is just at the beginning of a very long journey and in all probability, will possibly be too young and inexperienced for the London 2012 Olympics. But that won’t stop Sam’s 100% passion and determination each and every day, as he always has from day one.
   Amir Khan had great success as a young Olympian when he won silver and Sam knows that with hard work and determination, an Olympics medal is a real possibility for him.
   From all at Dial-a-Cab, good luck to Sam…

John Denham hails LTI apprentices…

Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills, John Denham MP, recently visited LTI Vehicles to meet apprentices and some of the staff who have benefited from Government funded training via Train to Gain.
   John met with John Russell, CEO of LTI parent company Manganese Bronze Holdings and LTI MD, Peter Shillcock. The Minister was also greeted by Sophia Lock, who in 2008 scooped the coveted EEF Engineering (West Midlands) Apprentice of the Year award and Sophie Emerson, who recently joined the company as a Business Administrator Apprentice.
   Following the meeting, John spent some time talking to staff that had participated in apprenticeship schemes at the Coventry-based company. He was also shown around the plant by Peter Shillcock.
   John Denham said after the visit: "I was delighted to meet some of the LTI Vehicles apprentices and staff. Manufacturing companies such
John Denham with LTI 
John Denham with LTI apprenti

as LTI make a vital contribution, not just to the West Midlands but to the UK economy as a whole.
   "These are challenging times, but we must look to the future by supporting the skills and expertise that we have in the West Midlands so that we can emerge stronger from the downturn and take advantage of the upturn when it comes."
   Peter Shillcock added: "It’s been a real pleasure meeting John today. Investment in skills and training is vital if we are to make the most of opportunities when the economy grows stronger. The visit gave us the chance to show what progress and achievements our apprentices have made. No doubt, they alongside their colleagues will ensure a bright, strong and competitive future for LTI Vehicles."
   Call Sign
says: LTI deserve congratulating on their policy of taking on apprentices. This gives young people a real start in life and it’s just a pity that something so common in the 20th century has now become such a rarity, that magazines such as this find it newsworthy. Well done LTI…

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