Boxing night provides pathway for amateur fighters

BACK IN THE RING: North Coast Light Heavyweight champion Zac Cotten during the Grafton Fight Night at the Clarence River Jockey Club.
BACK IN THE RING: North Coast Light Heavyweight champion Zac Cotten during the Grafton Fight Night at the Clarence River Jockey Club. Matthew Elkerton

BOXING: When talk was raised of putting on another fight night in the Northern Rivers, boxing promoter Nick Midgley had only one venue in mind.

Raymond Laurie Sports Centre - the home of Yamba Amateur Boxing Club, and the coaching of local boxing stalwart Norm Harvey.

Midgley, who operates Kingscliff Boxing Stables near the Queensland border, wanted to give the community a night it would remember, and a proud boxing coach the support he deserved.

"Norm Harvey is a legend of amateur boxing and a top bloke,” Midgley said.

"He has done everything for boxing around the region for many years.

"It has been a really diffi- cult and expensive process for Norm to try and organise fight nights over the years, so it would be good if we can get boxing thriving again in Yamba and raise Norm a bit of money and awareness of what he does.”

But to get the sport on

top again in the Lower Clarence, Midgley knows

he needs local boxers who are willing to step into

the ring.

The response to the Yamba Big Bash Boxing has been huge in the Clarence Valley, and with 11 fighters from Grafton and Yamba willing to take up the challenge it will be a night the region will not forget.

But while he said it was great to have 10 amateur bouts on the card, Midgley said the professional boxing was the most important part of the night because it showed there was a pathway through the sport.

"We are trying to give amateur fighters in the region a clear career path towards the professional ranks,” he said.

"There has been nothing happening in the Northern Rivers on the pro side for a number of years.

"A lot of amateur guys have their few fights and then pack it in because there is nothing.

"While we have had a few really successful nights up in the Tweed and Byron Bay, this will be the first step for our guys in Yamba.”

Local fighters on the undercard include Grafton's boxing brothers Brenden and Zac Cotten, Chris Jones, Sam McKechnie, Matty Lee, Glenn Ayres, Sam Lollback, Tom Woods, Luke Meyer, Nath Rheinberger and Yamba's Dan Austin.

Topics:  big bash boxing boxing fight night kingscliff boxing stables raymond laurie sports centre yamba boxing club

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