Express & Star

Walsall boxer Yusuf Uddin lands national title and an England call-up

Walsall boxer Yusuf Uddin was crowned the 2024 National Youth Champion after two stunning victories at the under-18s Championships.


Taking place at the Magna Centre in Rotherham, Uddin competed in the semi-finals and final in the space of 24 hours.

His victories saw him pick up the light-flyweight championship belt and earned him a spot on the England team, and the Walsall-born brawler is keen to prove himself on the international stage.

“I look forward to showing my skills on an international level,” Uddin said. “I’ve been placed on the England team for a year now and I eagerly await to represent my country and win more gold medals.”

Uddin, who proudly visited his club, Fearless Boxing Academy, to motivate the youngsters who were in training, also plans to take his belt to his school, Joseph Leckie Academy, where he studies as a sixth form student.

He said: “I’m proud of achieving such a feat many would only dream of, but I’m focused on improving further and adding to my already large collection of titles.”

In the semi-finals, Uddin faced off against Essex’s Calum Godfry, a two-time national champion with a two-inch height advantage.

Despite this, Uddin demonstrated his impressive skill set that left his opponent on the back foot, and a series of well-directed power punches brought an end to the bout in the second round due to a TKO stoppage.

In the final, the youngster was matched up against three-time national champion Riley Murray, who Uddin defeated in 2022 on points.

And the same happened again, with the Walsall fighter maintaining a relentless pace on his way to sealing a unanimous decision, crowning him national champion for the second time.

Uddin’s brother Hamza, who himself is fresh off signing a professional contract with Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing, was in the corner and is an ever-present member of the coaching team.

“I am the proudest older brother on the planet,” he said.

“Yusuf’s victory feels bigger to me than my own because of the bond we share.”

He added: “I have never missed a single sparring session of Yusuf’s; I know how hard he’s worked to win this which makes me even happier to see him get what he deserves.”

Raj Uddin, the father of Yusuf and Hamza, said: “Yusuf is a product of hard work and persistence, and his work ethic and mentality is an example even our senior boxers try to follow and replicate.”