CHARLENE Jones has vowed to learn from an ‘amazing’ Commonwealth Games experience after reaching the quarter final stage of the Women’s Lightweight (57-60kg) event.
The 23-year-old opened her campaign on Tuesday with an impressive win over Sri Lanka’s Hansika Arachchi.
The Pembroke Dock girl edged a tight opening round, before dominating the latter three to earn a unanimous victory.
And in doing so, she created history in becoming the first ever Welsh female to box in a major multi-sport competition.
That set up a last eight bout with Laishram Devi (India) on Wednesday, a World champion in 2006 and one of the favourites for Gold in Glasgow.
In an epic contest, Jones won the opening round, but the vastly experienced Devi took the next two and hung on in the fourth to secure a semi final berth.
Devi will now face Maria Machongua of Mozambique in today’s (Friday’s) semi final.
The defeat was an agonising one for Jones, as victory would have guaranteed her a Commonwealth Games medal.
But Jones, trained by Graham Brockway at Merlins Bridge Amateur Boxing Club, says she will return to Wales buoyed by her time in Scotland.
“The whole Glasgow experience was amazing and I had the best time of my life,” she told Telegraph Sport.
“I was gutted to just miss a medal – but I came up against a tough and experienced fighter and unfortunately it didn’t go my way.
“I do feel if I had faced any other fighter in the quarter finals I would have ended on the podium, but that’s just the luck of the draw sometimes.”
And Jones will not be resting on her laurels, and intends to return to training next week in preparation for the World Championships in Croatia in November.
“I know where I went wrong in the quarter final and now it’s about getting back in the gym and working towards the World’s,” she added.
Coach Brockway added he was proud of the way Jones performed in Glasgow.
Indeed, Jones said she wanted to thank him for all his help in her build up to the games, as well as KS Kitchen, Safe Haven Ltd, Murco, Three Crowns (Haverfordwest), Rhyal Engineering, Proteq Ltd, Haverfordwest Swimming Pool Trust, J1 Fitness, Aurora Health and Wellbeing and the Power Shack gym – all of which have provided the boxer with sponsorship.
“Without them it wouldn’t have been possible to prepare for the Games the way I did,” said Jones.