COLCHESTER boxer Lewis Richardson has a gold medal in his sights today when he takes to the ring at the Boxam Tournament.

Richardson is part of a Great Britain squad of eight boxers currently in Valencia, Spain for the annual multi-national knockout event, which begins today and runs until Saturday.

The 21-year-old middleweight, now based in Sheffield as a full-time member of the Team GB squad, is looking to make a big impression at the tournament.

And the Essex University Boxing Club member knows that performing well at the event will boost his chances of competing at next year’s Olympic Games, in Tokyo.

Richardson said: “I’m really looking forward to it.

“My main target is gold and I’ll be looking to bring it home.

“I’m hoping to be boxing on all four days and then flying home with the gold medal, on Sunday.

“It’s a four-day competition and it’s quite intense fighting every day.

“But I’ve been training hard and it’s a case of recovering quickly.

“I know that fight by fight, I’ll get stronger and stronger.

“Tokyo is getting closer month by month.

“That’s the big goal but you just have to do your best and keep striving.”

Richardson, who fights at 75 kilogrammes, will find his opponent today following the weigh-in.

“I feel great – I feel more of a rounded athlete now growing into a man and feeling like a big strong middleweight,” said the former Centurions BC member.

“I’ve spoken to a lot of coaches and they’ve given me a lot of positive feedback from the sparring that we’ve done.

“It’s now a case of being prepared for what’s ahead.”

Richardson is part of a GB squad of eight boxers who have travelled to Spain for the international competition, with five males and three females in action.

He is based at their headquarters at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield, where he is part of an elite band of senior boxers aged between 18 and 37 who benefit from UK Sport Lottery funding and the World Class Performance Programme.

He added: “I feel fortunate and it’s an honour.

“Representing Great Britain is always amazing.

“It’s a great feeling going round and seeing those GB flags and every time I put on the GB kit, it’s an honour.”

Richardson will be backed in Spain by his sponsors Datum Group, Maldon Demolition, Highwoods Health Clinic, Baccus and Jak Finch Hair.