Sports

Boyce victorious for The Bahamas in Orlando

Disappointed that he did not make it to the International Boxing Association (AIBA) World Boxing Championships in Russia, 19-year-old Bahamian amateur boxing sensation Lennox Boyce took out his frustration on American Hysom Sabet to win at the Impact Boxing II Presented by Title Boxing held at the Englewood Neighborhood Center, Orlando, Florida on Saturday, September 21.

Boyce, who is preparing for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics next summer, won the three-round bout 2-1. He also lifted his very own title championship belt. This was his first fight after he lost a very close match at the Sugar Bert Show in Punto Gordo, Florida back in June of this year.

He dedicated the fight to the persons who were affected by Hurricane Dorian.

“Prior to going in the ring, I had those people in mind. I wanted to make my country and people proud and be a very good ambassador for my country. When I got in the ring, I knew I had to get the job done and be victorious. The last fight I had inside the ring, I did not win so all of that was on my mind so I knew I had to be victorious,” Boyce said.

According to Boyce, in the first round he was examining Sabet to see what he was about and he knew that so he kept his distance to make it a ‘clean’ fight, something he learned from Ray Minus Jr., one of his coaches.

“He (Minus) told me in the past that you want to make sure that you have a clean fight. What he meant by that was to keep your distance, land clear shots on the guy and make him miss clearly so the judges can know who is winning because when you into foreign territory, the judges can be biased. You have to make sure you do extremely well and make the blows as clear as possible,” Boyce said.

Vincent Strachan, president of the Bahamas Boxing Federation (BBF), was in Boyce’s corner for the fight and Boyce said that he helped.

Boyce knew that the second round was close and went to the hometown favorite. In the third and final round, Strachan gave Boyce an important directive on how to fight Sabet who was a southpaw.

“Strachan told me to use my right hand a lot and to keep my distance. I followed through with that and the blows were very effective, making it clear that I would be the victor of the match,” Boyce said.

He won that round and the match 2-1.

With that fight out of the way, the quiet boxer has his eyes solely set on qualifying for the Olympics next year.

“It takes me praying hard and asking God the ability, strength, mindset and endurance to withstand the treacherous work ahead. It’s a tough journey and everyday I look forward to bettering myself whether I try to enhance speed and make my reflexes a bit faster. Conditioning and endurance are major keys in being able to move throughout the three rounds whether you have to box your opponent, throw one and two jabs at a time or get into an actual slugfest – punches back and forth with your opponent and keeping in mind the defense. You have to be conditioned because you never know what type of opponent you are going to face,” Boyce said.

According to a press release, the fearless boxer did not make it to Russia to the AIBA World Boxing Championships, an Olympic qualifier because the federation did not receive a letter of invite although the federation submitted the team registration to the Russian Foxing Federation.

For Boyce, he looked at the brighter side of missing that trip saying that he can now get better and become stronger, faster, more elusive inside the ring and display a different set of skills that takes you out of the ordinary and puts you in the extraordinary.

The 19-year-old boxer will be is expected to be in camp in Orlando, Florida for six months at a whopping cost of $20,000. Boyce expects a lot of sparring and with the ability to work with different fighters, he will be able to get a feel for the different type of styles that fighters possess.

The federation is appealing to corporate Bahamas, government and citizens to help in their crusade in the development of amateur boxing in The Bahamas.

He is motivated by not just the likes of Bahamians pro boxers Rasheed Williams, Amron Sands and Tureano Johnson but buy boxers around the world.

American professional box Floyd Mayweather’s style caught Boyce’s attention but he puts a variation to it.

Boyce, a devout Christian, thanked God for the victory. He also thanked his family, coaches that helped him and the Bahamas Boxing Federation for his victory.

After the Olympics, Boyce is looking to join the professional ranks in 2021.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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