Roy Halpin (left), Boxing Canada’s executive director was joined by athlete Alexandra Strickland and Langford Mayor Stew Young at the announcement for the 2019 Super Channel Championships to be held in Langford next April. (Lindsey Horsting/News Gazette staff)

National championship boxing event to take place in Langford

It will be a decade since Boxing B.C. has hosted nationals

Bear Mountain will host the 2019 Super Channel Championships.

The national championship tournament returns to B.C. after a decade as the last time Boxing B.C. hosted the competition was in 2009.

The announcement was made at the Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort and Spa Tuesday morning with a panel of spokespersons including Roy Halpin (Boxing Canada executive director), Don McDonald (president and CEO of Super Channel), Ryan O’Shea (Boxing B.C. president) and Langford Mayor Stew Young.

The competition portion of the championships will take place on the tennis courts that are under construction and are expected to be completed sometime in the fall. A dome will cover the tennis courts and enclose a space of 21,000 square feet, under which there will be two rings.

The Bear Mountain development area will be a festival-style area, hosting ceremonies and workshops for boxing.

Halpin said the tournament that will be hosted in Langford is an exciting one because it unifies all age categories and skill levels. The panelists unanimously agreed that the quality of the venue and the amenities at Bear Mountain are second to none, making it an easy location to choose.

Young added he was excited about hosting nationals because it fits in alongside the national tennis, golf and rugby family in Langford. He said he would be interested in bringing more boxing events to the area, especially after meeting with Boxing B.C. and seeing their enthusiasm to grow the sport.

Boxing B.C. athlete Alexandra Strickland, who owns Knockout Fitness B.C. in Langford, picked up boxing after retiring from gymnastics and fell in love with the sport, she said.

She has been boxing for six years but got serious after her daughter was born. She is a two-time Western Canada Champion and won silver at the 2015 Elite National Championships.

Read More: Ring dreams a family affair

She opened her own gym two years ago, just after her last national championship, and was busy growing her business so she decided to retire from competitive boxing. But she is considering coming out of retirement to get in the ring in her own backyard.

“It’s super tempting to come back, especially because it’s here,” Strickland said. “They [nationals] have been in Quebec and Mississauga the last two I was at.”

Strickland’s teammates from her competitive boxing days have retired, but now they too are contemplating coming back to fight because they are excited about the prospect of competing in their home province.

If she does decide to come back she will need to make the decision within the next couple of months to get back into fighting shape. The Emerald Gloves tournament is coming up in November and provincials would be soon after.

Strickland added Boxing B.C. is up and coming, with more women getting involved in the sport.

Super Channel sponsored its first Boxing Canada event in Edmonton this past March, McDonald explained, and is excited about being the title sponsor at Bear Mountain and for future partnerships.

He added Super Channel, a national premium pay television service, is working to televise the nationals finals matches.


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lindsey.horsting@goldstreamgazette.com

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