Lisa gunning for Euro gold

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Larches and Savick Amateur Boxing Club trainer Dave Fitzgerald has tipped his protege Lisa Whiteside to be crowned champion of Europe this week.

The 27-year-old boxer is representing Great Britain in the European Championship in Bucharest, Romania.

Fighting in the 54kg weight category, Whiteside has already won her opening preliminary round bout against home favourite Claudia Nechita on Sunday.

She faces Italy’s Marzia Davide in her next fight today – the winner going through to the quarter-finals.

Whiteside won silver at the same tournament three years ago and Fitzgerald believes she will go one better this time and claim gold.

“I think she will win it,” said Fitzgerald, who arrived in Bucharest yesterday to cheer Whiteside on. “She won her first fight on a split decision, which is not bad considering she was fighting a Romanian in Romania.

“Apparently Lisa battered her but they only gave it to her on a split decision.”

While Fitzgerald is certain of Whiteside’s class, he admits his biggest task is convincing the boxer of the same.

“You know what Lisa is like, she thinks every person she fights is going to beat her and then she gets in the ring and wins,” Fitzgerald said.

“The Romanian girl who she beat was all over the TV being interviewed before the fight, so she did well to win.”

Fitzgerald said a number of people had travelled from Preston to support Whiteside.

“There are eight of us who have come over to cheer Lisa on,” he said. “We’re actually in the same five-star hotel as the GB team.”