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Boxing: Cooke serves up masterful display; 'Ambassador' Evans knows it's time to hang up gloves.

Byline: By PHIL BLANCHE

SILVER medal list Kevin Evans bowed out of the ring with a glowing tribute from his Melbourne conqueror David Price.

Welsh super-heavyweight Evans called time on his distinguished career in amateur boxing after being stopped in the third round by Price, the 6ft 8ins Englishman he had beaten twice before.

But a third victory was never on the cards after Price imposed himself in the opening stages and Evans had to settle for Commonwealth silver to add to his two bronze medals from 1998 and 2002, a world championship bronze and a host of other domestic and national titles.

"It's been a pleasure to box Kevin three times," said Liver pudlian Price who, at 22, is seven years younger than Evans.

"He's been a great ambassador for the sport and is great sportsman. He's a lovely fella and I can't speak highly enough about him.

"He's an experienced lad and is a good scalp for me. But I always felt that I had a chance as I've improved a lot since I last met him three years ago."

Price - winning England's fifth boxing gold of these Games - used his superior size to telling effect and Evans was never able to get close enough to produce his customary power.

Carmarthen boxer Evans said he had no complaints about the outcome before announcing his decision to quit the ring.

"I am not too disappointed because if you get beaten fairly then that's fine," he said. "If you had offered me a medal before I came over here I would have been happy.

"He is a good fighter and he won fair and square. He has a big future ahead of him.

"I tried to out-jab him but that didn't work. I tried to rough him up but he was so awkward because he is so tall."

On his future, Evans - the standard-bearer for Welsh amateur boxing over the last decade - added: "That is me done - I am going to retire. I have made a great life out of boxing and travelled the world.

"Coming out to the Commonwealth Games to Australia in itself has been an amazing experience. I am proud of what I have achieved, but I don't want to step back in the ring. The only way I will be at the next Games is as a coach."

I am proud of what I have achieved, but I don't want to step back in the ring - Kevin Evans

CAPTION(S):

England's David Price (right) celebrates winning Commonwealth gold in the Super Heavyweight final at the epense of Wales' Kevin Price (left)
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Mar 27, 2006
Words:435
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