ROSIE Eccles capped an unforgettable 2022 by landing the Sporting Hero of the Year crown at the South Wales Argus Pride of Gwent Awards in Newport.

The 26-year-old boxer upgraded the Commonwealth Games silver she won in 2018 to gold earlier this year – and carried the Welsh flag during the closing ceremony in Birmingham.

Rosie, whose journey as a fighter began in Caldicot and continued at Chepstow ABC, took the light-middleweight title to become Wales’s second female Commonwealth boxing champion.

Despite injuries affecting her preparation, she cruised into the final and then produced a masterclass against Australia's Kaye Scott to claim first prize.

Rosie’s Birmingham triumph was made even sweeter given that it came two years after she suffered the disappointment of missing out on the Tokyo Olympics.

South Wales Argus:

Rosie Eccles with family and friends at the awards

Speaking after landing the Sporting Hero of the Year award, she said: “It was really nice to be recognised for what I achieved last year after all the hard work that was put in.

“And then to be presented with the award alongside my family, coach and his wife, who have been through it all with me, was even better.

“It is important to me that we share all the good times, so it was really nice that they could be there with me.”

As well as excelling in the boxing ring, Rosie, who is also affiliated to Pontypool ABC, is a perfect ambassador for the sport outside it.

She continues to be a role model for young amateurs making their way in the sport with her dedication and passion for what she does.

South Wales Argus:

Rosie, above, never forgets the people who helped her on her path to the top, and she now has her sights set firmly on making it to the Paris Olympics in 2024, which would be just reward for someone so hardworking and committed.

After winning her gold this summer, she said: “There were two dreams I had when I was a kid – being an Olympic gold medallist and a Commonwealth champion.

“One is ticked off and there are a few more steps to go to tick off the other one.

“I’m always quite humble, but I think my time has come. You haven’t seen the best of me yet.”

This year's Pride of Gwent event was headline sponsored by Caerphilly County Borough Council.