A trio of girl fighters discovered what Dorothy meant when tapping those ruby shoes and whispering “there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.”
Kaliesha West, Ana Julaton and Chevelle Hallback traveled far from home and all three departed from their fights without a win.
There’s no place like home.
West, a crackerjack bantamweight from Riverside, California, traveled all the way to the cold country of Denmark to fight former world champion Anita Christensen (24-1-1) for a vacant bantamweight world title. She had heard all of the rumors about fighting in Europe and about the bad judging. She discovered they’re true and was left cold without that title.
“Honestly I can only remember her hitting me flush three times in the whole fight,” said West (11-1-2), who returned with nary a mark on her face. “She hardly hit me at all.”
With her mixture of speed, power and stylish boxing, most experts in the boxing world knew that “Wild, Wild” West could beat anyone in the world including Christensen. But most experts already know that anything less than a knockout in Europe means returning home with a loss.
At least West got a draw.
“The people in Denmark were so nice to me,” said West who spent 10 days in the Danish community. “Everyone treated us so good.”
Except two judges who scored it a draw while a third had West winning handily at 97-94 which is what the 22-year-old felt was correct.
“I wish I could fight her here in the United States,” said West, who signed a contract that allowed for a rematch if Christensen agreed. “That would be great.”
In Ontario, Canada, the hometown girl Lisa “Bad News” Brown (17-4-3) beat San Francisco’s Ana “The Hurricane” Julaton (6-2-1) for not only the vacant WBA junior featherweight title, but a spot among the top 10 female fighters pound for pound.
One other thing, like West above, it was Julaton who agreed to travel to a foreign country to fight a very good boxer despite the odds of not getting favorable judging and fan backing. No matter, Julaton took the risk.
“Why did I do it? It’s to contribute to this great movement,” said Julaton about venturing to another country where the odds of winning are probably 100 to 1 without a knockout. “To have the sport (of female boxing) cross over.”
Despite suffering gashes alongside both eyes from accidental head butts, Julaton refused to quit when asked several times by her own corner and ring officials.
“That’s not my hometown so if you want people to root for you they have to know who you are,” said Julaton who resides in Daly City near San Francisco.
When the fight was over one judge did not give her a round the other two called it a near shut out.
Knowing both of their styles it’s nearly impossible for Brown to win almost every round. I’m not saying she didn’t win the fight, but I find it improbable that Julaton didn’t win more than two or three rounds. She is an action fighter and Brown, though she is a good defensive fighter, does get hit.
Let’s just say that judges Rocky Zolnierczyk (92-99), Ted Gimza (91-99) and Andre Pasquier (90-100) should not be allowed to oversee world title bouts in the future until they learn a thing or two.
In good old Albuquerque, Holly Holm (27-1-3) defended her junior welterweight world title against Chevelle Hallback (27-6-2) for a second time. You have to give credit for Holm to accept another fight against a slugger like Hallback. She’s no joke and the Florida fighter came reloaded with a new game plan and more weapons.
After 10 hard rounds the three judges scored it 98-92, 98-92, 98-93 for Holm whose move and groove style gives opponents fits. Hallback felt Holm beat her but also felt the judges were over zealous.
“I did do more this time, and felt the fight was much closer than the judges scored it. Holly never hurt me, but she had a good game plan and I let myself get frustrated by her movement, which resulted in me not throwing enough punches to put her away, especially when I had her hurt several times,” stated Hallback. “People say she doesn't come to fight, that she comes to run, but at the end of the day, she won the fight, and at this time, she is the pound for pound best.”
All in all three girls traveled to their opponent’s country and were given the boot. It’s enough to discourage any international competition.
There’s no place like home.
The fight between Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones Jr. will only be shown one time on pay-per-view. No other viewing will be available. So if you want to see it make sure you buy a 12-pack of Tecate beer who are co-sponsors and get the $20 rebate. Might as well buy the beer, slice some lemons or limes, and have a good time watching the fight card. Don’t forget to grab the rebate forms and fill them out. One of the Tecate crew e-mailed me that you can find the Tecate beer rebate stuff easily at Cardenas Markets.
WBA heavyweight titleholder David “Hayemaker” Haye (23-1, 21 KOs) defends his title against former world champion John “Quiet Man” Ruiz (44-8-1, 30 KOs) in Essex, England on Saturday April 3. The fight will be shown on Sky Box Office television. Haye is making his first defense of the title since beating Russia’s Nicolai Valuev.
WBO junior welterweight titleholder Timothy “Desert Storm” Bradley (25-0, 11 KOs) couldn’t find anyone willing to challenge him at 140 pounds so he’s willing to try out the welterweight division’s undefeated Carlos Abregu (29-0, 23 KOs) of Argentina. The fight takes place on June 19 at Agua Caliente Casino Resort and Spa.
Tijuana’s Antonio Margarito (37-6, 27 KOs) will return to the ring on May 8 and fight Roberto Garcia (28-2, 21 KOs) of Texas in a junior middleweight bout in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Margarito had been suspended for one year by the California State Athletic Commission in February 2009. It will be his first fight since losing the WBA welterweight title to Shane Mosley in January 2009. It was in that fight that he was discovered with illegal hand wraps that led to his suspension.
Vicente Escobedo and Abner Mares who both train in Indio under the tutelage of Joel Diaz won their fights last week by knockout. Escobedo (22-2, 13 KOs) stopped Carlos Urias (43-24, 32 KOs) in their lightweight fight last Friday in Mexico City. Mares (20-0, 13 KOs) beat Colombia’s Felipe Almanza (17-16-4) with a pair of pinpoint uppercuts on Thursday night. Mares next fight will be against Yonnhy Perez for his IBF bantamweight world title on May 22.
Miguel Angel Garcia (20-0, 17 KOs) of Riverside fights Tomas Villa (22-6-4, 14 KOs) in a 12 round featherweight bout on Saturday in Corpus Christi, Texas. Garcia, formerly of Oxnard, recently moved to Moreno Valley. His father Eduardo Garcia trained Fernando Vargas and many others in Oxnard and trains his son Miguel Garcia too. He’s one of the best trainers in the sport. It will be televised on Fox.
Riverside’s Josesito Lopez (26-3, 15 KOs) has been matched against undefeated prospect Mike Dallas Jr. (12-0-1, 3 KOs) in a junior welterweight bout set for eight rounds at the Citizens Business Bank Arena on April 24. Lopez, 25, currently ranked in the top 20, is trained by Henry Ramirez. Dallas, 23, lives and trains in Bakersfield and has not fought anyone as experienced as Lopez. It should be a tough battle.
Las Vegas lightweight prospect Sharif Bogere (14-0, 8 KOs) fights Carlos Claudio (10-4-3) in the main event at Rio Casino in Las Vegas on Friday April 2. The fight card is promoted by TKO Boxing Promotions and also features Leo Santa Cruz. For more information (888) 746-7784.
Cuba’s Erislandy Lara (10-0, 6 KOs) tangles with San Diego veteran Danny Perez in a junior middleweight fight at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino on Friday April2. The fight card is sponsored by Golden Boy Promotions and also features undefeated Hector Sanchez (18-0) against super quick Cleotis “Mookie” Pendarvis in a junior welterweight match.
Giovanni Segura (24-1-1, 20 KOs), the WBC junior flyweight titleholder, stepped up to the flyweight division against Ronald Ramos (28-8-3) and knocked him out in the fifth round on Saturday in Ensenada, Mexico. Also winning was former flyweight world champion Ulises Solis (30-2-2, 21 KOs) by sixth round technical knockout over Bert Batawang (45-15-3) of the Philippines.
England’s Matthew Hatton (39-4-2, 15 KOs) beat Italy’s Gianluca Branco (43-3-1, 22 KOs) by unanimous decision in Essex, England last Saturday to win the EEU title. It was the younger Hatton’s best victory to date.