National win a thrill for silky champ

Justin FrisSouth Western Times
Lekeisha Pergoliti was all smiles after her Australian title win, with her father Vince training her to glory.
Camera IconLekeisha Pergoliti was all smiles after her Australian title win, with her father Vince training her to glory. Credit: Justin Fris

Leschenault boxer Lekeisha Pergoliti has returned home with a title fight win at the 2019 men’s and women’s Australian boxing championships, much to the delight of her trainer and father Vince.

Lekeisha, who has pushed herself in 2019, defeated Queensland fighter Erin Carter on the Gold Coast to claim the Women’s Welter (64-69kg) title by unanimous decision.

“I had three or four days before the fight to relax and chill out,” she said. “But despite the break, I was still training hard there.

“And then fighting in the final, it was really good. Because last time I fought Erin I was a bit sick, I found it was really good to get there and just do what I do.

“It was also good to be at 69kg again because I did not have to cut weight or anything.”

Although the result was the same, the 17-year-old was able to go about her business differently against the Queensland native.

“It was definitely different. In the first fight there was a lot of holding and we did not box a lot. And in the first we only had two-minute rounds.

“Here, we had three-minute rounds and my game plan with her, because she does like to hold, was to just box and move.

“I just focused on picking my punches.

“We also focused on second attacks and volume (in terms of punches landed) in order to get those points.”

Back in the South West, Lekeisha is taking further strides outside of the ring to further her insatiable passion for fitness.

“I have just completed my certificate III in fitness,” she said. “I am doing some fitness classes and also a bit of admin as well.”

For Vince, training any national champion is a massive thrill, irrespective of it being a family member.

“I have trained several other people — not just Lekeisha,” he said. “We have won State titles, golden/silver gloves and this is our first Australian champion in the gym.

“As a coach, you have to work hard but your fighter also has to be prepared to put in the hard yards. And when they are prepared, it makes your job a lot easier.”

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