YMCA receives boxing equipment from GBSPA

BRINGING BOXING BACK – Pictured left to right, YMCA Boxing Director Nathan Davis, Grand Bahama Sports Promotion Association President Fred Sturrup and YMCA Executive Director Karon Pinder-Johnson. The parties met to announce the Boxing Restoration Invitational Tournament tentatively set to take place in November, while the YMCA received boxing equipment from the GBSPA, which was donated by Canadian and former boxer Karl Bennett (pictured at let in insert photo). Bennett donated the equipment to Sturrup to assist with bringing boxing back to GB. (PHOTOS: SHAYNE STUBBS)

The Grand Bahama Sports Promotion Association (GBSPA) made a timely donation in the form of boxing equipment, and other items to the YMCA recently. 

Earlier in the year, Canadian visitor Karl Bennett and his wife Renata, were introduced by Local Government Councillor Frazette Gibson, to GBSPA President Fred Sturrup, and subsequently gave him boxing gloves, workout mitts, head gear, framed pictures and portraits. The portraits were painted by Renata.

At a GSPA meeting, it was decided that Sturrup would present the whole lot to assist the YMCA’s boxing program. 

YMCA Executive Director Karon Pinder-Johnson and boxing director Nathan Davis were on hand to receive the equipment, Tuesday October 5. At the same time Sturrup announced that the GBSPA, in conjunction with the YMCA, expects to host a Boxing Restoration Invitational Tournament. The event is tentatively set for the end of November.

“Karon and Nathan have decided to work in conjunction with the GBSPA to promote boxing. In that vein we hope to have an event, which will be called the Boxing Restoration Invitational Tournament. 

“A date will be determined later, and that will mark the first of the sporting events for the GBSPA for the year 2021. I spoke with Karon yesterday and she’s waiting to start their program for the year, as well.

“We will join together to take boxing forward on an ongoing basis. Of course, we’re going to see how this event turns out and see how we can tweak the relationship to make it more cohesive going forward,” said sturrup.

The YMCA executive director voiced her enthusiasm in regards to the partnership. The YMCA’s involvement with boxing is well documented and in recent times the program has experienced some on and off success. But Pinder-Johnson feels this venture will be a decent step in the right direction.

“Boxing has had its time, and then over a period of time it declined. But we think this initiative is a great one. After going through a pandemic, and that activity at the YMCA had to be placed on the backburner, we’re just elated to now have it back. 

“Coach Davis and the boxers will be very pleased to know they can start their training once again. We hope the community will continue to support the YMCA and by extension the boxing community. 

“We’re happy and we look forward to an exciting renewal and continuation.” 

Pinder-Johnson and Davis expressed joy in receiving the boxing equipment, from Sturrup and his organization. The YMCA is set to resume the boxing program this coming Monday, October 11, in preparation for the event slated in November.   

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