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The Championship Amateur Boxing Club (CABC) is set to host the "Moving Forward" Amateur Boxing Show on Saturday, September 27, at the Wulff Road Boxing Square.
The club has been active lately and the "Moving Forward"boxing show will be the ninth event hosted by the club this year.
"We want to continue to develop talented boxers in the country. We believe in experience, and if a boxer has enough experience to know the ring, he has a chance to be successful. We have seen that over the past years with some of the veteran fighters that we have in the country, and so the Champion Boxing Club is proud that it has a program that is so committed," said Head Coach of CABC Ray Minus Jr.
"We want to thank the Ministry of Sports and all of our other sponsors for being there for us, and helping us host these events to build these young boxers up. The fighters are excited for this event for the chance to perform and show what they have learned in their training sessions."
Minus said he is proud of all of his fighters, but come Saturday, he will be particularly interested in the performances of Don Rolle and Lennox Boyce. Rolle is currently 15 years old and Boyce is 14.
"We are looking at these two boxers to soon represent the country in the 2020 Olympics. These guys are certainly on track and I believe that they will have an opportunity to be seen by the Bahamas Boxing Federation. I feel that they will stand out at every event and the thing is they still have so much time to grow and get better," said Minus.
"We want to encourage all of the clubs to come out and allow their boxers to have the opportunity to get some experience because the more of it you have, the better your chances will be when that big fight comes your way. We will continue to try and produce the best fighters that we can and we feel that we're doing a good job of that so far."
Following the "Moving Forward"showcase, CABC will host the 21st L. Garth Wright Sr. Golden Gloves Amateur Boxing Tournament on Saturday, October 11 at the Wulff Road Boxing Square.
The Strikers Boxing Club has been active in the country for quite a while, and just last Friday, the club wrapped up its second training camp of the summer. The camp was held at the Strikers Boxing Facility in the Golden Gates Shopping Centre.
Long-time friend of the Strikers Boxing Club and Head Coach of the Orlando Boxing Academy Jose Cruz assisted Strikers Coach Ronn Rodgers with the boxers' everyday training. He also brought three fighters with him from the New York area to help the Bahamian fighters get ready for their trip to Georgia this week. Cruz has been instrumental in bringing fighters to the island to make sure the Bahamian boxers are pushed to their limits, and not remaining complacent.
"We had a meeting at the end of the camp, and Mr. Cruz said something that really stood out to me. He said all coaches want and need one fighter to walk into their gym that has the talent to be a champion and they focus all of their energy on that one fighter, because they know that their club can make a lot of money from that one champion. He then added that you guys have five or six guys here with that kind of potential and that's unheard of," said Rodgers. "He saw the talent level here and really wants to be a part of this. He also wants to come down and help me coach these young boxers."
Strikers has assembled a five-member team to compete in the Title Boxing World Championships in Georgia that begin on Friday. The boxers traveling include Tyrone Oliver, Amron Sands, Israel Johnson, Kendrick Stuart and Deangelo Swaby.
Those five were in action at "The Chosen Ones" Boxing Show that Strikers put on in July, and although only Sands was victorious, each of the fighters looked much improved from their sparring sessions earlier in the year.
Rodgers wanted the camp to be solely based on sparring because of how sharp his fighters have become since sparring with high-level competition. Each of the three fighters that traveled to the country were champions in their respective weight classes.
"When we first started bringing down foreign fighters to compete against our boys here at Strikers, you could see that their level was a little more advanced than ours. They were a lot better than our boys the first time they came down to train. You could see the difference in their technicality, confidence and the difference in experience level. A month later we brought them in again to fight against us, and the growth of our boys was so great that we beat them," said Rodgers. "We had some fighters from New York in earlier in the summer and we were able to beat them, and then we had another camp and our boys basically owned the training camp, and looked much better than the foreigners did. We also watch videos of our sessions to try and gain more wisdom from them."
The Bahamian fighters will be competing in the bantamweight, middleweight and super middleweight divisions.
The passing of World Boxing Council (WBC) President Jose Sulaiman Chagnon brings to a close a very interesting and often controversial era in professional boxing. The Mexican-born boxing czar who died Thursday, January 16, developed into the most colorful boxing administrator in the history of the sport, and he was associated with highs and lows.
There was the relationship with promoter Don King that was considered by many as not a healthy connection. There was the large number of decisions made regarding rankings and statuses of boxers that seemed conflicting. One particular status adjustment led to a major suit against the WBC, causing the organization about $30 million.
Sulaiman was thought of mostly as an autocratic leader. His power appeared for most of his tenure, from 1975 to his death, to be absolute. I recall a WBC Congress I attended as the second vice president of the Caribbean Boxing Federation (CABOFE). Everything went according to the wishes of President Sulaiman. He was gracious. As the chairman, he allowed opposition to come from the floor, but it was more a case of him humoring those individuals. In the end, there would almost always be a motion that favored the position enunciated by Sulaiman.
Despite that side of the late WBC chief, I found him accommodating and kind. He recognized the need to embrace boxing organizations from around the world and their representatives were treated in kind. There was the part of Sulaiman also, that made him stand head and shoulders above his fellow international boxing leaders. He was innovative and the landmark decision he brought about in the WBC, for championship bouts to be reduced to 12 rounds from 15, will long be heralded as one of the great changes in the sport.
The WBC led the way in 1983 and the world followed. Sulaiman was concerned that 15 exhausting rounds with boxers pummeling each other, resulted in punishment that could be avoided. He concluded that three less rounds would prolong the careers of many champions and contenders.
Health-conscious sports personnel and medical doctors rallied around the new championship order. It was indeed a landmark ruling and no matter the aforementioned issues that threw him into a negative light, history will no doubt judge Sulaiman favorably because really, in my view, he had a kind heart.
In more recent times, he was passionate about the transformation of the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA). The body that controls world amateur boxing has now crossed over officially into the professional territory. Sulaiman was bitterly against the expansion of AIBA and expressed his view openly.
He raised "Cain" with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for its support and acceptance of the AIBA in the new role. It was a fight left unfinished. Sulaiman didn't get to go the distance this time. Now, someone else will have to carry on that battle. The boxing patriarch is gone.
May his soul forever rest in peace!
o To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at email@example.com.
Three weeks from now, more than 50 boxers from three different islands will step into the ring, all competing for top honors in the 18th L Garth Wright Golden Glove tournament.
The one night only event will be held Saturday, October 15 at the Wulff Road Boxing Square. This show will bring together boxers from the Inagua Amateur Boxing Club, Genesis Boxing Club, YMCA Boxing Club, Turks and Caicos Boxing Clubs and the host Champion Amateur Boxing Club. The event last year was held over a four- week course with more than 60 fights recorded.
Organizer Ray Minus expects the one night event to be very good with intense bouts in all the age division. He said: "This is an event that all the fighters look forward to. This time we are going to have one night of boxing, so the boxers will need to bring their best. We expect to have some good fights.
"Boxers will be coming in from Turks and Caicos, Inagua and Freeport. So we will be looking for a dynamic night. We are trying to do something special. We are having a punch-out championship. We have a champion already, Gilbert Cooper. He will be defending his title against a gentleman who goes by the name 'The Raging Bull' Carrol."
Some 20 bouts will be held at the tournament, which will be divided into two sessions, a morning and evening. Minus said the chances of boxers fighting in more than one bout is very great. He noted that the boxers are all prepared for a long day, and have been training very hard.
Kimberley Williams called very soon after the match between her husband Sherman "Tank" Williams and Chauncy Welliver in Macau, China. She was trying to remain calm, but the excitement came through despite her efforts.
She was the provider of the best boxing news for The Bahamas since a November evening in 1975 when Elisha Obed won the World Boxing Council junior middleweight title.
Tank upset the odds and captured two very important titles (WBO China Zone and WBO Asia Pacific). All considered, the performance by Tank arguably ranks third in the history of boxing in The Bahamas. In my view Obed's 1975 effort in a Paris ring ranks first.
Then, I go all the way back to October of 1963 when Gomeo Brennan won the country its first international boxing crown. He defeated Briton Mickey Leahy to capture the British Empire (Commonwealth) middleweight crown. The fact that Tank is 39 and had to overcome many disappointments in the last few years, combined with being matched against an opponent who was a favorite in the China area, speaks volumes for him. Welliver is American-born but resides in New Zealand and fought in China twice before.
We live in a society of skeptics so there are bound to be those who will downplay the accomplishment of the Grand Bahamian, but Tank can be very content with having registered a noteworthy triumph. I expect for the victory over Welliver to vault Tank firmly in the World Boxing Organization's top 10 rating and possibly the World Boxing Council, the World Boxing Association, the International Boxing Federation and the International Boxing Organization.
It is at a time like this that boxers need good "lobby" representatives in their camps. The case could easily be made for the Tank being included in the top 10 rankings of the noted world boxing bodies as a result of his showing against Welliver. A good lobbyist would have no difficulty at all.
It was sad that he got absolutely no mileage after his stunning work over three rounds against former multiple world heavyweight champ Evander Holyfield in January of 2011. Tank and Kim struggled mightily to make some inroads but just did not have the clout.
Hopefully, this time, Tank will connect with someone who is capable of representing him to the fullest extent, to capitalize on the great 12-round display against Welliver. I have checked around. It was not a fluke victory. I've always lauded Tank's ability to manage his actions, offensive and defensive, well in the ring.
At an age when most boxers begin to lose their power, Tank has sustained and can be devastating with left hooks, overhand and straight rights. Holyfield found that out. He was lucky the referee stopped their bout after three rounds and declared a no-contest.
I believe Tank would have knocked him out that night.
Last Friday in China, Welliver discovered also what Tank is all about. He had no answers for Tank as he dipped, bobbed and weaved relentlessly and launched wicked hooks and power-packed rights.
At the end, one judge scored the fight 119-110 in favor of the Bahamian while another had it 115-112 and a third scored it 114-114, even. It is my understanding that the 119-110 scoring was the accurate one. Looming for him are the likes of the 6-8 Commonwealth Champion Tyson Fury and perhaps one of the Klitschko champions (brothers Vitali and Wladimir).
(To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at firstname.lastname@example.org).
This coming Saturday at Mario's Bowling and Family Entertainment Palace, the Bahamas Boxing Commission will stage a seminar that will focus on the medical and officiating aspects of the sport.
The seminar comes at a time when the professional boxing scene is showing signs of vibrancy. A boxing show which was organized by the Major Promotions and Entertainment group did not draw a huge crowd earlier this month (February 4), but the 200-plus spectators were treated to an exciting card and it is clear that the enthusiasm is at the very least, building again for professional boxing.
There is another new promotional group on the scene. Former Bahamian middleweight champion Elkaener Saunders heads a group that is pushing for a big return to the ring by Jermaine Mackey. The former Commonwealth Super Middleweight Champion, Mackey, is 18-5, but has not fought since 2009.
He was once considered world championship material. Many thought of him as the one with the best chance to follow Elisha Obed with the official claim of an authentic world title. However, he appeared to be badly misguided and his boxing world came crashing down. His pending return has added to the enthusiastic climate in professional boxing these days.
It is from this backdrop that the seminar being staged by the commission is most important. The time is right to acquaint all of the frontline folks in the local boxing fraternity with the medical and officiating regulations they need to be aware of. At the forefront of the seminar on Saturday will be chairmen of the Medical and Officiating Committees respectively, Commissioner Dr. Munir Rashad and Commissioner Fernley Palmer. Statistician Commissioner Paul Moxey is assisting Commissioner Palmer.
The presenters during the medical segment of the seminar will be Dr. Pat Roberts, Dr. Ricardo Davis and Dr. Rashad. Drs. Roberts and Davis are long-time supporters and assistants of professional and amateur boxing. Dr. Roberts will lead the discussion on anti-doping as it pertains to boxing and Dr. Davis is scheduled to pass on to the attendees, his insight on injuries in the ring.
Medical Committee Chairman Dr. Rashad will wrap up the segment with a concentration on the necessity of a medical certificate to clear a boxer to compete. The officiating segment will be coordinated by Commissioner Palmer and Commissioner Moxey. Amateur world certified official Alvin Sargeant will be invited to make a presentation as well. Their focus will be ring conduct, time lines of shows, judging, scoring, dressing room activity and the referee's authority.
It is an appropriate forum that the commission will be providing. The event will begin at 8 a.m.
To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at email@example.com.
Tuesday of this week, November 13, marked the 37th anniversary of the one true world boxing championship won by a Bahamian. On a night in Paris, France back in 1975, Elisha Obed stopped Miguel de Oliveira to capture the World Boxing Council's version of the junior middleweight title.
That achievement remains the centerpiece of the many ring accomplishments of Bahamian fighters. Presently, the once feared Obed is not doing well physically. He last participated in a functional capacity in a boxing environment back in 2008 when the Pan American Caribbean Boxing Organization sponsored his trip to Jamaica to be a special guest at the first Caribbean Sports Icons Awards.
Obed even then was obviously operating at a much slower pace than during his prime years, but he was still fully aware of the scene and interacted easily with other boxing legends and luminaries of the sport.
Today, he has slowed considerably more, but the rich legacy of the sport he loved dearly continues.
The rather nice history of this small Caribbean nation in professional boxing goes on through the valiant efforts of heavyweight Sherman Williams, light welterweight Edner Cherry and super featherweight Meacher Major. They are the most active of current Bahamian professional boxers.
Still adding prominence to the boxing scene however are former greats Gomeo Brennan, Wilfred Battling Douglas and Leonard 'Boston Blackie' Miller. The chief commonality for them is a topic that comes up when I chat with each of them.
Gomeo Brennan defeated both Douglas and Miller.
Brennan is 73, Douglas is in his early 80s and Miller is some years older than the listed 71. He is probably closer to Douglas than Brennan.
The question of Miller's age adds to the country's boxing lore.
Brennan resides comfortably in Miami and maintains constant contact. He has expressed a willingness to be included in the development process of the sport. The same is the case with Douglas who has made Grand Bahama his home for about 40 years now.
Miller has set the standard for giving back to the sport. Miller more than any other top boxer has remained a fixture in the development process. As a result, in the near future, he will be given the high honor of having the new boxing facility in Flamingo Gardens named in his honor. The details for the occasion will be disclosed very soon by the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture and the Bahamas Boxing Commission. It will be real neat for Brennan and Douglas to be among the invited guests.
Their presence will be ample proof of the continuance of the excellent legacy of the sport in this country.o To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At a recent meeting of top sports and youth leaders, a valid point was made that the way forward, if the potential of the sports industry is to be fully tapped into, is for all involved to adhere to the set conditions and the regulations that control the respective programs.
Promoters being unable to operate strictly in accordance with certain important conditions established by the Bahamas Boxing Commission (BBC), is the major reason for the lack of regular pro boxing promotions. The BBC functions via an Act of Parliament. The guidelines of control are of the order of all of the authority boxing boards in the region and the Commonwealth of Nations.
The act gives commissioners the authority to be flexible in most instances. However, there are some areas that must be monitored closely. There must be insistence by the commission, in order for the body's credibility to remain cemented in place. At the meeting of local leaders, it was lamented that for such a long time, there was the habit of moving around rules, thus resulting in an environment almost across the board, of inefficiency.
In pro boxing here, at times in order to encourage promoters, the commission has been very flexible, and then got betrayed. In 2010, there was such a situation. The show went on without the commission being firm with certain conditions and the result was embarrassment.
For months, the commission received communications from agitated local and foreign representatives of boxers who claimed to have not been paid. Subsequently, the commission determined to endorse a boxing show only with the understanding that the funds for the boxers' purses and fees for the officials would be provided to be held in escrow two weeks in advance of the proposed show date.
Also, there have been cases when the schedule of bouts first presented by the promoter, ended up being adjusted on fight night in a non-complimentary manner. Therefore, it was decided that the condition of the full contracts for all fighters being submitted two weeks prior to the proposed show would be firm. The commission also insists that a medical team is available. The very easy total of $300, normally, covers the sanction for the show and the promoters' fee. That's the lowest combination in the world.
Yet, promoters have had great difficulty getting the contracts of fighters into the commission on time. Also, there has been a problem getting the funds submitted, to be placed in escrow. Responsible for ensuring that all boxing purses and officials' fees are paid is the direct responsibility of the commission. The small population in The Bahamas limits the gate potential. Promoters have been unsuccessful in getting the kind of corporate sponsorships that would enable them to appropriately deal with the conditions of the commission.
So, there is this conundrum. Yet, the commission forges on doing the business of pro boxing control, as mandated by the Act. Courageous promoters continue to step up to the plate, although with less regularity. Pro boxing goes on.
On Friday night at the Rainforest Theatre, inside the Wyndham Nassau Resort, Meacher Major and Brazilian Roger Rosa will headline a boxing show, being jointly organized by the Strikers Boxing Club and Buttons Formal Wear. The sport needs a shot in the arm. Hopefully the action in the ring at the Rainforest Theatre will provide such.
o To respond to this feature, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at email@example.com
There is an interesting scenario that confronts the world boxing fraternity. The International Amateur Boxing Association (or Association Internationale de Boxe Amateur - AIBA) has expanded into the professional category...
An assault on the senses with color, music, high stakes games, beauty and intrigue around every corner is what the fantasy casino night known as Pandora's Box in Paradise will be.
It's an evening that will include performances by the renowned European strolling musicians, the Gypsy Queens, a montage of burlesque by Dita Von Teese and an adrenaline-filled improvisational painting performance by Dan Dunn of Paintjam (as seen on Ellen, Jimmy Fallon and America's Got Talent).
With an exotic array of fine food and libations, you are invited to peek into -- and then step into Pandora's Box -- a fundraising extravaganza to benefit children's charities including the Ranfurly Homes for Children, Bilney Lane Children's Home, Children's Emergency Hostel and the Elizabeth Estates Children's Home, in the Imperial Ballroom at the Atlantis on Friday, February 1. Cocktails are scheduled for 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. -- after that the craziness that will pop out of Pandora's Box continues until late.
A fantasy charity casino will be a highlight of the evening. Fantasy chips won at gaming tables can be used to purchase raffle tickets for a chance at extravagant prizes worth $650,000 worth of amazing raffle and auction prizes such as a $135,000 (2012) Mercedes-Benz CLS 350; a $25,000 shopping spree at John Bull and at Chopard, courtesy of the Chee-A-Tow family; a luxury trip on a G500 private jet that can be used in the United States; a one-week cruise to be used in southern Italy on a 165-foot private yacht; a two or four-seat golf cart by Shirley Enterprises Ltd. and a 10-night stay at any One&Only Resort.
Pandora's Box in Paradise is a charity fundraiser that Harry Cohen and his colleagues came up with to benefit children's charities in The Bahamas. They approached Atlantis with the idea of the fantasy casino night and they were hooked.
"Pandora's Box conjures up the image of opening up a box and being surprised by everything one finds in it," said George Markantonis, president and managing director at Kerzner International (Bahamas) of the intriguing evening. "It's a fantasy casino night [with] spectacular prizes that people can win. It's fantasy gaming in a fun way with a live auction, silent auction and a raffle as well," he said.
Fantasy chips won can be used to purchase raffle tickets, or tickets can be purchased independently with cash or credit card.
"We searched all over to get the best [entertainment] for the Atlantis," said Cohen, chairman of the event's organization committee, referring to Von Teese, the Gypsy Queens and Dunn. We hope [people] will be attracted to this event because it gives them an opportunity to gamble and have fun in a fantasy way, and also partake in good food and good entertainment and all proceeds go to charity."
The goal is to reach $300,000 at the end of the Pandora's Box in Paradise evening. The event can accommodate 500 people. Cohen said the response has been overwhelming.
Tickets for Pandora's Box in Paradise are $500 per person or $4,500 per 10-person table and includes unlimited drinks, fantastic dining, a cigar bar and $1,000 in fantasy chips. To reserve tickets, call the Atlantis Box office at 363-6601 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
PANDORA'S BOX IN PARADISE
When: Friday, February 1
Where: Imperial Ballroom at the Atlantis
Time: Cocktails 7 p.m. - 8 p.m., Pandora's box 8 p.m. until late
Benefit: Children's charities in The Bahamas
Tickets: $500 per person or $4,500 per 10-person table, includes unlimited drinks, fantastic dining, a cigar bar and $1,000 in fantasy chips.
Box office: To reserve tickets, call the Atlantis Box office at 363-6601 or email email@example.com.