On the horizon, Tijuana to host 2nd Annual WBC Female Convention

header Convention posterThe World Boxing Council’s Second Female World Convention is set to take place January 27 to 30, 2016 at the Grand Hotel Tijuana in Tijuana, B. C., Mexico. Once again, it will be a gathering of many of the female world champions, well known promoters, managers, ring officials, commissioners and of course members of the media.


 

If you make your bookings and reservations through the WBC by sending them an e-mail to wbcfemale@wbcboxing.com, they have promised to provide shuttle service from the airport (Tijuana or San Diego) to the hotel. If you spend the necessary time looking over this article over and testing yourself, you should have a pretty good handle on who’s who and you’ll have an even better time then you could ever imagine.

Developments since the first WBC Female Convention: 

Last year, the World Boxing Council held their first Women’s Convention from September 24 to 27, 2015 at the magnificent Grand Riviera Princess Hotel in Playa Del Carmen. At this historic Women’s Convention, you had the local Mayor of Solidaridad Playa del Carmen, Sr. Mauricio Gongora rolling out the red carpet, plus the hotel absolutely had it all: from the beautiful rooms, multiple swimming pools, luxury restaurants and so much more. The list of Champions who took part included: Laila Ali, Christy Martin, Mia Rosales St. John, Jelena Mrdjenovich, Jackie Nava, Ana Maria Torres and Zulina Muñoz.

This time around the ladies should have a lot to discuss especially in regards to improving the disparity not only in the finances between what a male boxer and female boxer gets paid, but the lack of attention they receive from the TV Networks. The highest purses ever received by a woman boxer pale in comparison to the multimillion dollar payouts the men enjoy. Back in the mid-to-late 90s, female professional boxing had only a few star attractions, e.g. Christy Martin and Muhammad Ali’s daughter Laila. It was reported that Ali earned $15,000 per performance, which with inflation would today be closer to $50,000. That momentary upswing for the ladies revolved around just a few “it girls.” In other words, the promoters, federations, councils, etc. still fail to see the value in promoting the female boxers of today. Every once in a while, you’ll see a promoter like Tijuana’s Memo Mayen have one of his “Pretty in Pink” extravaganzas and the show is a reasonable success. Meanwhile, the UFC paid Ronda Rousey a salary with bonuses to reach $230,000+ for each of her performances.

It all comes down to receiving the proper marketing push which leads to exposure on TV. Dana White and his hype machine had ESPN drooling all over Ms. Rousey. Even Ring Magazine had Rousey on their front cover. The ESPY for “Best Fighter of the Year” went to Rousey – not fellow UFC fighters Daniel Cormier, T. J. Dillashaw or Conor McGregor, or perhaps the many male boxing greats like Roman Gonzalez, Sergey Kovalev, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Gennady Golovkin, Guillermo Rigondeaux and Terence Crawford. Makes you wonder about these top executives at ESPN. Where did they get the notion Ms. Rousey was invincible? They were probably fascinated by her performance in that Sly Stallone movie “The Expendables 3,” and got caught up in the Rowdy Ronda Rousey myth of how she can beat up anybody, even World Champion boxers like Floyd Mayweather Jr.

In 2012 with the advent of women’s boxing at the London Olympics, boxing promoters were curious to see if any star power would emerge from the female participants. Only one U. S. boxer made a name for herself, 17 year-old Claressa Shields from Flint, Michigan. Now with the 2016 Olympics just nine months away, the only U. S. Gold Medal winner from 2012 has yet another opportunity to seek acclaim.RRR What they should be discussing is the availability of the Albuquerque, New Mexico native, Holly Holm who is fresh off her thrashing of Ronda Rousey, one of MMA’s biggest moneymakers. With the dominate win, the former three division boxing champion, who over a 13 year period held 13 separate Boxing titles, is now a legend in women’s boxing. With all that has happened, the renewed interest in boxing by the TV Networks, the success of all these young champions, the WBC, Hollywood looking for their next Marvel Comics heroine, things should be looking up for female boxers. The question is, how can the WBC help get more of our young female champions involved?

Just last week, the WBC proudly announced the current undisputed World Lightweight Champion Delfine Persoon would be attending the Convention. Persoon concluded her year by being elected Belgian Sportsperson Of The Year. It was the first time ever that a professional bóxer, male or female, received this prestigious award. Persoon defended her WBC World title twice and earned the top spot in the Female pound-for-pound ratings. On April 25th she traveled to Berne, Switzerland, to stop mandatory challenger Nicole Boss in the ninth round. On November 11th, she earned a hard fought unanimous decision victory over previously unbeaten European champion Maiva Hamadouche in a spectacular “Fight Of The Year” candidate. After turning pro in 2009, Persoon has been unbeaten for over five years, having won 35 of her 36 pro fights, her sole loss coming early on in her career.

In 2014, she became the WBC Female World Champion by defeating previously unbeaten Erica Anabella Farias and then successfully defended her title against the then reigning WBC Female Super Featherweight Champ Diana Prazak.

In 2014, Delfine Person (r) became the WBC Female World Champion by defeating previously unbeaten Erica Anabella Farias (l) and then successfully defended her title against the then reigning WBC Super Featherweight Champ Diana Prazak.

Also on hand for this convention will be Sue “Tiger Lilly” Fox the founder and creator of WBAN (Women Boxing Archive Network), and as of 2014, the President of the IWBHF (International Women’s Boxing Hall of Fame). Fox, who boxed from 1976 – 1979, has plans to announce the 2016 Hall of Fame Nominees.

Since the WBC is headquartered in Mexico City and the majority of female boxers and female boxing champions (4) are from Mexico – it makes sense to have the follow-up convention in Tijuana, especially with so many female professional boxers living near by in Southern California and Baja California. If the WBC uses video of the proceedings, they can then air it on YouTube, through their WBC website or through the numerous promoter websites (22) who worked with the WBC in 2015. That way the other powerhouses of female boxing namely Argentina, Japan, United States, Belgium, Germany, Finland, Ireland, Jamaica, and Columbia can view the proceedings and get the feeling they too were a part of this initiative. Regardless of how many magazines, newspapers or websites cover these young ladies, you can’t beat the benefits of video and Live TV. Since the female boxers are a product that needs to be sold, someone needs to be going non-stop selling this product. Over the past decade how many female boxers have you seen on American TV? You answered none? That’s likely the sum total. While in Europe, Mexico, Argentina and Japan you’d be surprised at the number of female fights they air on TV.       

One final observation is the difference between these organizations as it pertains to their world rankings. Boxing fans are not only confused but perturbed when they hear about all these multiple world champions. It’s understandable to have a disagreement as far as who is in the top 10 or top 20 rankings, but it makes no sense to have multiple #1s. Perhaps the WBC could lead the way to eliminate this controversy. 

We must also remember there is a huge difference between the number of men and the number of women within the ranks of professional boxing. The men by far out number the ladies, 18 to 1. If we add up every male in the 18 weight classes and divide by 18 you would have a number well over 1,000. If tomorrow we were to have a roll call of all active female professional boxers on the planet, they’d be hard pressed to muster a thousand.

In the following collages you will see many of the up and coming starlets of boxing - some are only dreamers, others have clear cut paths laid, others have

In the photo collages we have the many faces of the up and coming stars of Amateur Boxing from San Diego and Imperial County plus Baja California. Amongst them are National Champions and the young ladies who have competed in the recent Olympic Trials. You might say some are only dreamers, but at this juncture they sure know how to impress. In their gyms, the youngsters look up to them for inspiration. They train hard, maintain the right priorities and know how best to gain a competitive edge.

ccc b Collage 3

(photo, top) At the time pro boxer Amaris Quintana (c) from the Bound Boxing Academy had an upcoming fight in Tijuana and every member of her gym lent their support.

(top photo) At the time this photo was taken pro boxer Amaris Quintana (c) from the Bound Boxing Academy, Chula Vista, had an upcoming fight in Tijuana and as you can see every member of her support group lent a hand to insure her show was a success.

Different stages of competition: The three ladies on the left (l to r) Stalacia Leggett, Raquel Miller and Danyelle Wolf competed in the 2015 Olympic Trials, while the young ladies on the right, (l to r) Andrea Medina and Jessica Juarez

Different stages of competition: The three ladies on the left (l to r) Stalacia Leggett, Raquel Miller and Danyelle Wolf competed in the 2015 Olympic Trials, while the young ladies on the right, (l to r) Andrea Medina and Jessica Juarez competed in and won more than a few USA National Tournaments. Photo: Jim Wyatt

(starting at the top, l to r)

(starting at the top) See how many of the outstanding boxers you can name? (l to r) Ibeth Zamora Silva, Cecilia Braekhus, Yazmin Rivas, Jackie “La Princesa Azteca” Nava, Ana Maria Torres, Jessica Chavez, Zulina Munoz, Alicia Ashley, Lucia “The Dutch Destroyer” Rijker and finally Sweden’s super welterweight world champ Mikaela “Destiny” Lauren who came to San Diego to train with Danyelle Wolf at The Arena.

(top to bottom, l to r) Serrano, Melissa McMorrow, Christina Hammer, Amaris Quintana, Popp, Jolene Blackshear.

(top to bottom, l to r) You have the super featherweight Champion of the World, Amanda “The Real Deal” Serrano, followed by flyweight champ Melissa McMorrow, middleweight champ Christina Hammer, lightweight & super welterweight champ Layla McCarter, light flyweight Amaris Quintana, flyweight Maria Suarez, flyweight champ Yesica Yolanda Bopp, former flyweight champion Jolene Blackshear and super bantamweight Maureen “The Real Million Dollar Baby” Shea.

Joselyn , Caleressa Shields, Sindy Amador, Susie Kentivan, Sandra Robles Kenia Enriquez,

(top, l to r) Light flyweight champ Joselyn Arroyo (Princesa Tapatia) Ruiz, super middleweight gold medalist Claressa Shields, former light flyweight champ Sindy Amador, former light flyweight champ Susie Kentivan, flyweight sensation Sandra Robles and former light flyweight champion Kenia Enriquez.

Carolina Rodriguez, the first Chilean to win a world title, Tijuana flyweight Brenda Flores, Kenia Enriquez's undefeated sister, Tania, UBF super lightweight champion Melissa Hernandez (22-6-3) of Miami, Florida, WBA minimumweight champ Anabel Ortiz of Tepic, Nayarit, Mexico, Eva Wahlstroem, 136 ¾, the WBC World female super-featherweight champion, Tori “Shu Nuff” Nelson defended her WIBA welterweight title, 

More alluring headliners: Super lightweight champ Melissa Hernandez of Miami, Florida, WBC minimumweight champ Yuko Kuroki of Japan, WBA minimumweight champ Anabel Ortiz of Tepic, Nayarit, Mexico, Kenia Enriquez’s undefeated sister Tania Enriquez, super featherweight champ Eva Wahlstroem from Finland, Tijuana flyweight Brenda Flores – entertaining and no doubt beautiful to watch.

Current reigning WBC Female World champions:

Heavyweight: MARTHA “The Shadow” SALAZAR (San Francisco, Calif.) returned to the ring after a six year absence at the age of 43 and beat the top ranked heavyweight, unbeaten Sonya Lamonakis. She’s only fought three times over the last eight years and not at all in 2015. On February 2, 2016, she’ll be 46 years old. 

Super Middleweight: NIKKI ADLER (Augsburg, Bayern, Germany) 14-0-0, In Adler’s only bout of the year, she defeated Szilvia Szabados (6-2) by taking every round except for one on one of the judges scorecards in the 10 round whitewash. 

Middleweight: Currently vacant

Super Welterweight: MIKAELA LAUREN (SWEDEN)

Welterweight: CECILIA “First Lady” BRAEKHUS (Bergen, Norway) 27-0-0, 7 KOs, hasn’t fought in over a year and 27 days.

Super Lightweight: ERICA ANABELLA FARIAS (ARGENTINA)

Lightweight: DELFINE PERSOON (Roeselare, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium) 35-1-0, 16 KOs, is a true champion and has now defended either the WBC title, the WIBF title, the EBU title or her WIBA title over a dozen times. 

Super featherweight: EVA WAHLSTROEM (FINLAND)

Featherweight: EDITH SOLEDAD MATHYSSE (ARGENTINA)

Super Bantamweight: ALICIA ASHLEY (Brooklyn, N. Y.) 23-10-1, 4 KOs is the WBC champion even though she was soundly defeated by Tijuana’s Jackie Nava and then Nava defended her title twice, the final time on Feb. 28, 2015 went on maternity leave.  

Bantamweight: YAZMIN RIVAS (MEXICO)

Super Flyweight (112-115): ZULINA MUÑOZ (MEXICO)

Flyweight (108-112): JESSICA CHAVEZ (Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico) 25-4-3, 4 KOs is now the reigning WBC World Flyweight Champion even though she was soundly defeated by Ibeth Zamora Silva in November of 2014 at the 108 pound catch weight. 

Lt. Flyweight (up to 108 lbs.): IBETH “La Roca” ZAMORA SILVA (San Cristóbal Huichochitlán, Mexico) 24-5-0, 9 KOs {the WBAN has Esmeralda Moreno (32-8-1, 11 KOs) as their champion} even though Silva has beaten most everyone to include Esmeralda Moreno, San Diego’s Jolene Blackshear, Jessica Chavez, Ava Knight and 20 other boxers.  

Minimumweight (up to 105 lbs.): YUKO KUROKI (JAPAN) 12-4-1, 6 KOs {the WIBA has Siriporn Thaweesuk 37-3-0, 19 KOs as their champion}

Atomweight/Junior Strawweight (up to 102 lbs): MOMO KOSEKI (JAPAN) 20-2-1 (7 KOs) {The WIBA has Ji-Hyun Park (22-2-0, 6 KOs) as their champion}this year's location more austere

The hotel hosting the WBC convention is the Grand Hotel Tijuana at Blvd. Agua Caliente, #4558 Col. Aviación, C.P. 22014 Tijuana, B.C., México. If you are interested in attending this affair, the daily room rates will be 1,245.50 Pesos (approx. $75 US) for a Single Room and 1,442.00 Pesos (approx. $85 US) for a Double Room to include a continental breakfast.

The tentative agenda for the WBC Convention:

Wednesday, January 27
All day for arrivals and registration – then at 8 p.m.
they’ve scheduled a Welcome Cocktail hour.

Thursday, January 28
9:00 a.m. is their official opening
Noon: Departure to the Valle de Guadalupe for lunch and a winery tour

The Baja California Wine Tasting Tours are very popular with the American tourists.

The Baja California Wine Tasting Tours are very popular with American tourists.

8 p.m. there is a Talent show and social gathering at the hotel

Friday, January 29
09:00 – 13:00 a working session
13:00 – 15:00 Lunch
15:00 – 18:00 another working session
20:30 – Gala dinner with awards being presented

Saturday, January 30
09:00 – 11:00 Final working session
11:30 – 13:00 WBC Cares visit
16:00 – either the departure to a major boxing event – our guess the Yazmin Rivas (34-8, 10 KOs) vs. Catherine Phiri (10-1, 5 KOs) from Lusaka, Zambia bout in Tijuana 
or perhaps the WBC folks will first go to their farewell dinner and then on to the Boxing show.

(beIN Sports Espanol): Yazmin Rivas

(beIN Sports Espanol): Yazmin Rivas (l) versus Catherine Phiri bout tentatively scheduled for Saturday, January 30, 2016 somewhere in Tijuana, B. C., Mexico. Matchup confirmed on Thursday, January 14, 2016.

Sunday, January 31
All day departure of the delegates

The reason for this article and the many photos is to show you the boxing fan plus the administrators of the WBC (World Boxing Council) that the work about to be done Wednesday, January 27th through Sunday, January 31st is of major importance. On a daily basis these young athletes are in their gyms working hard to learn their craft and all they need is an opportunity to show the public how accomplished they’ve become, how entertaining they can be. And as the saying goes, ‘We are products of our past, but we don’t have to be prisoners of it.’ All these female boxers need is the proper exposure because they can sure know their craft.

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About the Author

Jim Wyatt, a 1970 graduate of St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, has written weekly sports features for several Military newspapers, WCKMuayThai.com, SportofBoxing.com and Examiner.com as their San Diego Boxing Examiner. He was one of the four "Wise Guys" who predicted winning football selections versus the Vegas spreads. Some of the people he enjoyed meeting: Earvin "Magic" Johnson, WWF Wrestler Lita, LaDainian Tomlinson, Nate Kaeding and Darren Bennett of the Chargers, Tony Gwynn and Jake Peavy of the Padres, soccer stars Shannon MacMillan and Julie Foudy, Mixed Martial Artists Cris Cyborg, Junior Dos Santos, the Nogueira brothers plus the many great people involved in boxing and Muaythai.