Women’s boxing has been reinstated into the Olympics for the next Games, in London and although Cayman won’t have a rep there in 2012, in the not too distant future the hope it will have a world class female fighter to vie with the men for international glory.
At the forefront of women’s boxing in Cayman is Tracey Seymour who is a regular at the D. Dalmain Ebanks gym in George Town. Getting matched is a problem for female fighters in the Caribbean which is partly why Seymour, 25, has only had four contests in the few years she has taken it seriously. Two losses and two wins are not impressive statistics but she has won many nightclub organised fights and her next amateur contest is when Cayman go over to Florida to take on the best at West Palm Beach Boxing Club on 20 November. Under the guidance of coach Donie Anglin, his assistant Norman Wilson who is also Charles ‘The Killa’ Whittaker’s trainer and Troy O’Neil, the programme is coming on leaps and bounds. Whittaker coaches too. Plenty of girls and women train there and as word gets round the numbers are increasing monthly.
“My training has been going great, it’s tough but I’m hanging in there and improving as much as I can,” says Seymour who is trying hard to get in shape but admits she still has a way to go before reaching the 150lbs target. “I’ve lost about 14lbs but still have a lot more to lose and little by little I will do so as I’m aiming to be a middleweight fighter again or even lower.”
Nutrition for any sports minded person is an important factor and Seymour admits that particular discipline has been tough. “Hahaha. Yikes, we’re getting into my eating habits. I try to make breakfast each morning whether it’s a bowl of cereal, a bagel or toast with scrambled or boiled eggs and a cup of tea, but sometimes I miss it because I work some very early hours as an operations manager at the Tour Company.
“For lunch it’s a turkey sandwich and for dinner to be honest I really haven’t been eating much as after training food is the last thing on my mind. But when I do eat dinner it’ll be homemade pasta. I try not to eat too much carbs as that was my problem before when I used to eat all sorts of junk – Burger King, Wendy’s, just lots of greasy food and sweet stuff. I had a sweet tooth all the time.”
Now more focused, she hopes the dodgy knee won’t hamper her progress. “Before my knee injury I wanted to seriously get into a boxing career, but not with the way the knee is now. At the moment I just want to fight as much as I can to gain more experience so that I can one day help my coaches train young female boxers.
“The guys in the gym treat me like an equal. Probably sometimes too much like an equal that they forget that I’m a woman,” she laughs. “But seriously they have a great deal of respect for me, especially when I get in the ring and go toe to toe with them, never backing down. They see that I’m a serious chick and I think in some ways I impress and motivate them.”
She hopes to inspire and guide other women to box. They are gradually growing in numbers at the gym and include Jessica McFarlane-Richards, Myra Bodden and beauty queen Shari Walton. “My advice to women wanting to box is if you’re truly serious about it, give it your all, go that extra mile or two and you’ll get far. It’s some tough stuff this sport, but you can do it if you truly put your mind to it and once you have your mind set, keep it that way, as only you can defeat yourself when it comes to your mind.
Cost to become a boxing gym member is $10 and it costs $25 a month to train there. For more information, contact coach Donie Anglin on