Thu | Sep 24, 2020

Holmes looks to deny Reyes an early birthday present

Published:Tuesday | April 3, 2018 | 12:00 AMLeroy Brown/Gleaner Writer
Jamaica's Richard Holmes (right) in action against Canada's Frank Cotroni last year.

Jamaican Richard 'Frog' Holmes, who is now a veteran in the Wray and Nephew Contender boxing series which starts tonight, will try to give Jamaica its first victory for 2018, when he clashes with Canadian Lloyd Reyes over five rounds at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium on Hope Road in St Andrew. The action starts at 8.30 with two amateur bouts and the main event, which will be televised on TVJ, starts at 9.30.

Competition will be in the welterweight class this year, with a maximum weight of 147 pounds, and Holmes, said yesterday, that he hopes to take home the title and $2-million prize money, this year. He reached the finals in 2015 and 2016, but last year he was beaten by Canadian Phil Rose, in the quarter finals. Rose was beaten by Sakima Mullings in last year's final.

The runner-up in the series will take home $500,000, third prize will be $250,000 and fourth prize money is $200,000.

It will be a straight fight between boxers from Jamaica and Canada again this year. Each team has eight boxers, in the preliminary round, and the top four from each team drew an opponent from the bottom four of the opposing team. The winners will meet in the quarter finals, after which the competition then moves to the semi-final and final stages. Competition in the semi-finals will be over seven rounds and the final contest will be over 10 rounds.

Holmes will be going up against an opponent who comes from a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) background, who will be making his professional boxing debut. Reyes, who was born in Guyana, but has lived in Canada since he was a teenager, said yesterday, that he has enjoyed MMA, and has had four wins versus four losses. He has, however, decided to widen his horizons by competing in another contact sport that he loves, and is " happy to be a part of the exciting Contender Series." He will be 31 on Sunday, and is planning to give himself an early birthday present tonight.

Reports are that he has great ring savvy and more than ordinary boxing skills, but he will have his hands full coping with the experienced Holmes, who has an impressive 18-5 ring record, including eight knockout victories.