'The Contender is just for entertainment'

July 21, 2018
Lennox Lewis (centre) observing two of the campers in action at last week's League of Champions youth boxing camp at the Hopewell High School in Hanover.

Western Bureau

Three-time world heavyweight boxing champion Lennox Lewis believes the ongoing Wray and Nephew Contender series is just an entertainment show which is robbing the public of the opportunity of seeing true boxing.

The highly, popular amateur boxing competition 'Contender' has been the main event locally for Jamaica's boxers in recent years. The winner of the final, which is set for July 25 at the National Indoor Sports Centre, will take home $2 million.

"I look at it as a very entertaining show. I don't really see it as true boxing," said Lewis, who remains the last heavyweight to hold the undisputed title. "It's disappointing because that's all we've got. The promoters out there, obviously they are trying but I believe Jamaica should have a promotion almost every month because people love boxing.

"People have no other choice but to watch the Contender because there is nothing else for them to watch. So if they want to see a little mix-up that's where they'll see it," he added.

Lewis is hoping to get into boxing promotion locally and will be looking to provide an avenue for young boxers to develop their skills.




"I believe it's good to have a promotion (Contender) like that but it is also good to have other promotions, so I'm looking to put a promotion on as well and that's in the near future," said Lewis.

He added that these are going to be serious promotions between Jamaican and American boxers "so the Jamaican crowd can actually go to a fight and have a young fighter that they can support."

Last week, the Lennox Lewis League of Champions foundation staged its fifth summer youth boxing camp at the Hopewell High School in Hopewell, Hanover. The seven-day camp ran from July 7-14 with just under 100 children participating.

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