Not every boxing show can boast a politician fighting a senior policeman, but that fight was one of the best of many entertaining bouts at the Lions Centre on Saturday night.
The Elite Marble & Granite Saturday Night Fight pitted Bodden Town councilor Alva Suckoo against policeman Michael “Bobby” Peart.
On paper it looked like a mismatch. Peart is naturally the bigger man and a former boxer, whereas Suckoo is just a boxing fan who only pulled on the gloves recently. After three entertaining rounds, Suckoo’s higher work rate gave him the verdict, but Peart looked as if he was holding back throughout.
With Premier Alden McLaughlin looking on, maybe Peart’s fighting heart deserted him. The premier hopped into the ring – just for fun – at one point.
Peart said, “I wouldn’t say I was disappointed. Mr. Al was the better fighter tonight. I need a rematch with him. Make it be known. And the next time I’m going to send him to his mother to take care of him.”
Suckoo said, “I trained hard. Not much this week because I was in the Legislative Assembly for much of it. But I never thought I won it.”
Who does Suckoo want as his next opponent? He laughed, “McKeeva Bush!”
The show’s real headline match was teenage sensation Hopkin Ebanks in a tough contest against Trinidadian Reynold Belcon.
It was a fierce pace from the start, and Ebanks was blowing hard at the end of the first round. But the welterweight slugger from West Bay found a second wind and hit Belcon repeatedly with hurtful shots, especially his terrific left hook, to win unanimously.
Ebanks, 17, said after his last fight at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa in September – when he lost for the first time in seven bouts – he had to improve his lateral movement. He was not as flat footed this time but still got drawn into trying to brawl it out rather than using guile to outpoint Belcon.
Ebanks thanked “everybody for coming out to support me” and is looking forward to his next bout in the new year.
“I’m looking forward to bigger international fights,” he added. “I want to keep myself busy all the time.”
The match between Trinidad’s Christian McDonald and Fort Lauderdale-based American Fernando Calderon was the best of the night, with McDonald winning easily.
Calderon, a 28-year-old bruiser, never stopped pressing and throwing punches against the 17-year-old McDonald, who boxed superbly, often smiling as if relishing the challenge. McDonald’s composure, timing and technique made him seem like a seasoned pro and he is definitely one to watch out for in the future.
The heavyweight match between Cayman’s debutant Andre Hind and the experienced Bahamian Davan Hamilton was a painful one for Hind.
Nevertheless, Hind took his blows manfully and deserves props for taking the match in the first place.
Cayman’s world-class boxers Tafari Ebanks and Kendall “Flash” Ebanks worked in the boxers’ corners. The show was organized by the Cayman Islands Boxing Association and Mark Woollard of Silverlight.
Patrick Hughes has only been boxing a few weeks, but he was far too good for fellow Caymanian Blaze Bodden, who was given standing counts in the second and third rounds by referee Nayon “Donie” Anglin.
Hughes has a karate background and that experience must have been invaluable for his noble art debut. The hard-punching Rashawn Powery repeated a points win over Brandon Cunha and in the opening bout, two young girls, Chamveria Dalhouse and Hepseba Angel, battled it out, with Angel winning by split decision.