GB BOXING’s Performance Director, Rob McCracken described double Olympic champion, Nicola Adams as “one of the as one of the greatest female boxers of all time” after she announced her retirement from the sport on Tuesday.
Adams joined the GB Boxing squad in 2010 and at London 2012 she became the first women in history to win an Olympic gold medal for boxing. She followed it up at Rio 2016 with a second gold, before leaving the Olympic programme to join the professional ranks where she won a WBO world title.
Rob McCracken said: “Nicola has made a huge contribution to both the Olympic programme and the sport of boxing. Her achievements sparked a boom in women’s boxing and inspired thousands of women and girls to take-up the sport.
“She was a huge talent that always produced her best performances when the stakes were highest and won everything there is to win.
“Her performance at the London 2012 Olympic was one of the highlights of the Games and secured her a place in history as the first woman to ever win an Olympic gold medal for boxing. To then go and win a second gold was a fantastic achievement and rightly marks her out as one of the greatest female boxers of all time.
“Nicola has been a superb ambassador for the sport and a significant part of the success we have enjoyed at GB Boxing over the last ten years. She remains part of the GB Boxing family and will always receive a warm welcome whenever she visits our gym in Sheffield.”
Adams is one of GB Boxing’s most decorated boxers having won flyweight gold at London 2012 and Rio 2016. Her victory in Rio, when she defeated Sarah Ourahmoune of France in the final, made her the first British boxer since Harry Mallin in 1924 to retain the Olympic title.
It capped a triumphant year for the Leeds boxer in which she also won the world championship for the first time when she defeated Thailand’s Peamwilai Laopeam in the final in Astana, Kazakhstan.
The victory completed a career ‘grand slam’ of winning every major title available to her. These included the European and world championships, the European Games, the Commonwealth Games and the Olympic Games.
A household name since her iconic victory in London, Adams was nominated for BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 2012 and 2016 and was made an OBE in the 2016 new years’ honours list.
Adams began boxing at the age of twelve and had her first bout a year later. She was the first women to box for England and win a medal in a major tournament when she picked up the bantamweight silver in the European Championships in Denmark in 2007. Silver at the 2008 world championships in China followed, however she faced a career threatening back injury in 2009 which prevented her from boxing for more than a year.
She recovered in time to be named in the first ever women’s GB Boxing squad in March 2010 and went on to win eight major championship medals, including two Olympic golds, in six years.