OVER the past week, she’s pulled pints instead of her punches.
But now, Savannah Marshall is ready to use her hands again for what they were made for – in the boxing ring.
SportMail reported on Friday that Marshall had agreed a two-year sponsorship agreement with town brewery Camerons.
The Hartlepool fighter put pen to paper, and pulled a pint, at the ceremony at the Camerons Brewery Visitor Centre, or the Stranton in old money.
But she is now looking forward to the real business of boxing after a very mixed year.
Twelve months ago, almost to the day, Marshall returned to Hartlepool feeling on top of the world.
The Headland ABC middleweight became Britain’s first female global champion and only the second-ever from these isles when she defeated Azerbaijan’s Elena Vystropova in the U75 kilo final in China.
Her stunning form in Qinhuangdao saw her go through the whole tournament without losing a round.
She beat American wonderkid Claressa Shields – the tournament favourite – in her first bout before outclassing ex-European title holder Lotte Lien and then two former world champions Jinzi Li and Nadezhada Torlopova.
The Russian-born Vystropova was edged out 17-15 in a final thriller, fittingly on her 21st birthday.
Gold in China saw her installed as favourite for the Olympic Games.
But London 2012 did not go according to script – Marshall suffered a controversial quarter-final points defeat to Kazakhstan’s Marina Volnova.
It began the start of the most frustrating and disappointing stage of a boxing career which had begun at the Headland ABC’s Northgate gym as a 13-year-old.
The Dyke House girl was first put out of the gym with a stress fracture of the leg which took some time heal.
She said: “I was suffering with it at the Olympics, but I just had to get on with it – there was not a lot else I could do.
“After the Olympics I went on holiday and it was thought a complete break from training and the gym would do the trick.
“But then when I got home, I ended up in a pot and on crutches.”
And no sooner had Marshall resumed in GB Boxing’s HQ at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield it was decided she should have surgery on a niggling injury to her left hand.
The 22-year-old is punching again and will put her fist to the test at the European Union Championship in Hungary in July.
“My hand is fine,” Savannah told SportMail.
“I was quite cautious to start with after being given the go ahead to start punching again.
“But I’m upping the punching power now.
“I feel good and I’m just looking forward to boxing again.”
The consolation for Marshall is that she has hardly missed a thing during her absence.
Bizarrely, given the success of women’s boxing at the Olympics, there has been a dearth of female tournaments in the nine months since London 2012.
The only competition of note was the Feliks Stamm Memorial Tournament in Warsaw at the end of last month.
“You never want to be injured, but all my time out with my stress fracture and then my hand has come when there have been no tournaments,” she said.
“Apart from the Feliks Stamm, I have not missed a thing.
“I can’t wait to box to see what level I’m at and what I need to work on.
“It’s nice as well to go there having got this sponsorship deal with Camerons.
“I’m grateful to them for backing me.”