The recently opened D Dalmain Ebanks Boxing gym gets its first airing tomorrow with a white collar boxing bill and amateur bouts.
White collar contests are between ordinary working people who have no ambitions – or are too old – to be classified as amateurs. The amateur age limit is 34. Most white collar fighters work in, eh, white collar jobs, hence the term. Lawyers find this a good outlet for venting their frustrations.
There are going to be eight bouts with five white collars and three amateur.
The line up so far is: Gus Dacker (Citco) v Luke Willingdon (Abacus), Peter Lewison v Dariel Ebanks, Shane Gallery (UBS) v Wilson ‘The Honduran’ (Every Bloomin’ Thing), Warren Wills (Deloitte) v Simon Raftopoulos (Appleby), Kieran Walsh (Maples) v Greg Crawley (Deloitte), Bruce Coulson v Eric, James Brendling (Citco) v Gareth ‘The Pride of Wales’ Griffiths (Maples) and Oral Smith v Ronaldo Garcia.
Maples lawyer James Burch is the driving force behind the show. He said: ‘We have two partners from Maples, one from Applebys and various other firms represented this year who are boxing. Seven of the white collar fighters are making their debuts and we welcome back some ‘old’ faces including another lawyer, Gareth Davies (who bashed me up last time).
‘Of the local fighters, fresh from his success in Bahamas last week is Dariel Ebanks who will be squaring off against Peter ‘Lightening’ Lewison which is guaranteed to be an explosive encounter. Eric and Bruce will also provide an excellent match of styles and who cannot help to be excited but the clash of the superheavyweights, Oral and Ronaldo who will finally meet in the ring could be the highlight.’
The proceeds from the fights will be used to support local boxers as they look to travel overseas more regularly as the 2012 Olympics loom as they need the necessary tournament experience to give them the best possible chance to qualify and represent the Cayman Islands in London.
Burch added: ‘Tickets are just about sold out although some are held by the fighters which can be bought from them directly. There will be none on sale at the door.’
This show is exactly a year after the first white collar night that Burch organized.
‘The reason why there has been such a gap is that we were waiting for the new gym to open to provide us with a dedicated training and event facility and this was the first available date that did not clash with other events on island and also enabled us to get the new boxers up to speed and ready for fight night.
‘Going forward, provided this event is a success, the fight nights will be held on a more regular basis and we are also looking forward to having more of our neighbours like Jamaica and the Bahamas visiting us to take on our national team.
‘On the white collar side, more fighters have been joining us and what started with three of us training at the old seaman’s mission has now grown into about 25 training with some fighting this time around and others preparing for the next fight night in 2010.
‘Lachie Hewitt of Cayman Sports has also been instrumental in helping these fighters prepare, providing extra sparring and coaching for many of them.
‘The new facility has made a real difference to training and we hope that the boxing scene on island will continue to grow under the guidance of coach Donie Anglin and the Cayman Islands amateur Boxing Association.’
Burch boxed a brilliant draw against Bruce Coulson last time but is not fighting this time. ‘I am actually injured but decided to skip this event and perhaps fight on the next one. Like Mayweather, I was waiting for a Pacquiao to come along as in my retirement years I am only interested in the bigger fights. I hear that ‘Pacman’ Shillingford has been making noises about a return and that is a fight that would tempt me to dust off the gloves again…’