Boxing family in love with the gloves

A game of snap in the Henry household must be brutal.

The Henrys, you see, all pounce like cheetahs and hit like mules.

All four of them have at least one South Island Golden Gloves title to their name.

It is basically a family tradition.

Parents Ryan and Cherine have retired from the ring. But they forged impressive careers in the sport.

Cherine won multiple titles and represented her country. She is probably the most accomplished of the Henrys in the ring.

Ryan's background is in grappling events but he started boxing in the late 1990s and won a South Island Golden Gloves title in 2005.

The Henry family sure packs a punch. Zsana (front right) and her brother Awatea (front left) will fight in the Canterbury Championships this weekend. Dad Ryan (back left) and mum Cherine are former South Island Golden Glove winners. Photo: Peter McIntosh
The Henry family sure packs a punch. Zsana (front right) and her brother Awatea (front left) will fight in the Canterbury Championships this weekend. Dad Ryan (back left) and mum Cherine are former South Island Golden Glove winners. Photo: Peter McIntosh
He also introduced his wife to the sport. But their role these days is to support their children, who are moving through the ranks.

Son Awatea is just 17 but has already amassed 48 amateur fights and collected several titles.

This year, he has racked up five straight wins and will be hoping to extend his winning streak at the Canterbury Championships this weekend.

He is fighting the North Island No 1, so there is a lot at stake.

Awatea will be joined at the event by his sister Zsana. The 20-year-old took up the sport about a year ago and has really flourished.

She has dropped 25kg and joined her family in the South Island Golden Gloves club when she notched a unanimous win over Phillipa Hancox in the 75kg elite female novice division in Kaiapoi in early June.

''The kids were brought up in a gym,'' Ryan said.

''Awatea was in a pram watching me in the gym ... and [eventually] stepped through the ropes himself.

''Zsana has had two fights now for two wins, so she seems to be carrying it on as well.

''I think it was a bit like [it was for her mother]. Cherine just jumped in once to give it a go and she ended up representing New Zealand.''

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