From Brum to LA for West Mids Police
“LAPD! LAPD!” Find out why West Mids Police boxers are going all Californian.
The bizzies will have a 16-strong team taking on the Los Angeles Police Department in their own backyard this summer.
The sports club – which consists of police officers and staff from across departments – began against a squad of firefighters in aid of Cauldwell Children’s Charity in 2013.
The team, has since gone on to compete in other events around the country.
“self-funded Stateside journey”
They are taking annual leave for the self-funded Stateside journey which will see bouts take place in Montebello, on the western coast, on 20 July.
These are being sanctioned by the California State Athletic Commission meaning all boxers will be required to weigh in the day before and meet strict regulations, similar to professional athletes.
PC Sunil Bedi, a force response officer in Wolverhampton and qualified coach, said:
“We have a lot of sporting teams within West Midlands Police and boxing is one of them.
“We do it because we enjoy the sport and we’re excited about the opportunity to compete against our American counterparts.
“Of course it’s a combat sport but we take pride in how we match the boxers up and our priority is their safety.”
He has been with the force for 14 years and helped set up the team alongside Sergeant Richard Churchill, a neighbourhood sergeant in Walsall, after receiving the support of Chief Superintendent Mike O’Hara.
Members meet up to train in Wolverhampton as regularly as they can but only when off duty.
The keen boxer who is known to everyone as just Bedi added:
“When we set up the club we never imagined we would end up in a ring in America and it will be an historic moment.
“Boxing helps us police officers by keeping us fit and giving confidence in dealing with difficult situations.
“Hopefully, we can follow in Tyson’s footsteps with our own success but whatever happens, it will be a fantastic experience.”