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Women boxers get ready for championships

Monday, April 1, 2013
Members of the T&T women’s boxing team. Front row: Yousanna Mohammed, Stephanie Allen, Ingle Charles, Boxu Potts and Cecil Forde. Back row: Kimberly Jackson, Lexing Duke, Chimere Taylor, Corsilda Skeete (chaperone), Cherisse McCarthy and Reynold Cox (coach).

The T&T Amateur Boxing Association (TTABA) and the Ministry of Sport are ensuring that the women’s amateur boxing team is well prepared for the Intercontinental Championships which takes place in May 2013. The women were presented with their training kits last Saturday at the newly renovated National Boxing Centre. 


President of the TTABA, Cecil Forde, handed over the gear to seven young women, four of whom are members of the Elite (19 years and over) team. 


Members of the team will get their first warm-up match on Saturday against Guyana and Barbados when Ingle Charles and Kimberly Jackson will look to avenge their recent losses against Jenny Benedict and Kimberly Gittens respectively.


The Elite team comprises Chimere Taylor (captain), Stephanie Allen, Ingle Charles and Candice Pyke. The four women are no strangers to the ring and to success. Taylor and Allen have represented T&T on several occasions, including the World Games and the Pan American Female Championships. Both are looking to build on that experience and qualify for the 2016 Olympics. 


Taylor started boxing five years ago and says that boxing has assisted her in trying to be the best at everything she does. “It teaches you how hard you really have to work to achieve your goals. When you get in the ring, you got to stand up for yourself. It’s either you or your opponent. 


“Boxing has had such a strong impact on me, because no matter what I do, I’m always working hard, even if it’s a simple thing as cleaning my room, I do it quick and to the best of my ability. At the end of it all you got to know how bad you really want it”, Taylor said.


Taylor takes her role as captain seriously and said she’s keeping her focus and working towards being not just a better boxer but also a better individual.


Another well-accomplished boxer is 23-year-old Stephanie Allen. In the recent national championships, Allen showed tremendous improvement and confirmed her place as one of the top female boxers. She has her sights set on winning an Olympic gold medal and becoming one the best as a professional in her weight class. Allen attributed her all-round development to boxing and said that the sport has definitely made her a better person.


Pyke is also a veteran, having won Female Boxer of the Year in 2009, 2010 and 2013. The young mother is known for her craftiness and skill in the ring. Completing the team is Ingle Charles, who fell just short of winning the National Lightweight title in 2013. Charles is intent on moving forward and has indicated that any previous loss never detered her but rather served to motivate her to improve. 


Forde expressed his gratitude to Minister of Sport, Anil Roberts and the his Permanent Secretary, Ashwin Creed for their foresight in assisting the boxers. He also expressed his thanks to Boxu Potts, whom he said was working assiduously to ensure that amateur boxers are given the opportunities necessary to move forward.


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