The seventh-annual Jim Gallagher Memorial Boxing Tournament returns to the Cloverdale Legion on Saturday, March 16, to raise funds and awareness for amateur boxing.
The event is a tribute to one of “amateur boxing’s biggest fans,” Jimmy Gallagher, who passed away in 2012. Gallagher first got started in the world of boxing in the early 1970s, taking his sons Kerry and Steve to the Cloverdale Boxing Club. Gallagher soon became a fixture at boxing shows, both locally and nationally.
He became an accredited judge and referee with the B.C. Amateur Boxing Association and the Canadian Amateur Boxing Association. He would give more than 40 years to the sport.
When he died, the “sport of amateur boxing lost its biggest fan, and the community and those of us who knew him lost a dedicated, giving and hardworking friend,” said boxing liaison Ralph Robson.
The annual boxing tournament is a joint venture between the Cloverdale Legion, of which Gallagher was a lifetime member, and the B.C. Amateur Boxing Association. The event raises money to support amateur boxing — last year a total of $2,000 was given to junior boxers to help cover travel expenses to tournaments.
The Saturday evening event will feature ten bouts, two of which will be heavyweight and super heavyweight division.
The card is being finalized, but matchmaker Al Harper, head coach of the Port Kells Boxing Club, promises that the event will feature the best of B.C.’s senior, junior and youth boxers.
Langley boxer Tyler Chambers will face Kelowna’s Rob Mason-Brown in the super heavyweight division. Harper predicts this bout will be “controlled mayhem.” Many fans will remember Chambers from his time as a hockey player with the Vancouver Giants and the Quebec Ramparts. He has just come off a tune-up win in preparation for this fight.
White Rock boxer Josh Wright of the Ocean City Boxing Club will go toe-to-toe with Glen Ford of Vancouver’s Rain City Boxing Club in the light-middleweight division. Both are elite senior boxers and, according to organizers, the winner of the bout will represent B.C. in the upcoming nationals, set for April in Victoria.
Port Kells Boxing Club’s Avi Singh will bring five years and 21 bouts of experience to his match versus Donavon Cridland in the middleweight division. The stakes are high, as the winner will also go on to nationals.
South Surrey boxer Josh Lauriente, another Port Kells Boxing Club athlete, will compete in the light-middleweight youth division. The 17-year-old already has 30 bouts of experience, and hopes to represent B.C. nationally.
The event is billeted as affordable family entertainment. Admission is $20, and children 12 and under are free. Seating is first come, first serve. Doors open at 5 p.m., and the show starts at 6 p.m.
The Cloverdale Legion is located at 17567 57 Ave.