IF Savannah Marshall truly believes in herself in London next week no-one will stop her from striking Olympic gold.
That was the confident assessment of Team GB comrade Natasha Jonas.
The Scouser is not only sharing an apartment with Marshall in the Olympic Village she has shared the moments of triumph enjoyed by Marshall in her meteoric rise through the international scene.
The most recent success came at the World Championships in China, where the Hartlepool fighter clinched the U75 kilo title on her 21st birthday.
“Savannah’s the best in the world and she’s going to be the best in the world for a long time,” declared the 28-year-old lightweight.
Before she’d even got the gold medal around her neck, the world had already been made to sit up and take notice of the Poolie.
Marshall beat new kid on the block Claressa Shields in her opening bout in China and the pair could meet in the semi-final in London if they clear their early hurdles at the ExCel Arena.
Many pundits – and the American team – believe Shields will reverse the result this time and go on to become the first female middleweight Olympic champion.
But Jonas has no doubts about the Headland fighter.
“I’ve always known the talent that was in her it was just a case of her bringing it out,” Jonas said.
“I was made up by what she did in China.
“Before she fought Claressa Shields, we built her up and said ‘you are the best boxer’ and wanted her to go out and show it.
“After the first round Savannah must have thought to herself ‘I’ve got this’ and she boxed her head off.
“You couldn’t even say it was close.
“I thought she made her look a bit silly.
“From that point it just gave Savannah the big confidence boost she needed – she boxed superb right through the tournament.”
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