Nanaimo’s Ross Walker, front, connects with a punch against opponent Michael Kechichian during a bout earlier this spring at Saanich’s Pearkes Arena.

Nanaimo’s Ross Walker, front, connects with a punch against opponent Michael Kechichian during a bout earlier this spring at Saanich’s Pearkes Arena.

Boxing event will take over VIU theatre

NANAIMO – The WBC B.C. amateur middleweight championship will be on the line in the main event of a card June 4 at Malaspina Theatre.

A busy night of boxing is being planned for next month.

The World Boxing Council’s B.C. amateur middleweight championship will be on the line in the main event of a 10-12-bout card June 4 at Malaspina Theatre.

Nanaimo’s Ross Walker (5-0) will face George Vourtsis (16-2) of Gibsons for the title, currently vacant.

Don Arnott, Walker’s trainer at Tomari Martial Arts, received sanctioning for the title fight and was able to build an undercard of amateur bouts on short notice.

“There’s going to be some dynamite fights,” Arnott said.

Walker, an assistant coach with the Nanaimo Buccaneers junior B hockey team, will be the underdog in his fight.

“He’s got nothing to lose if he doesn’t win; if he wins, he’s accomplished a huge thing…” Arnott said. “He wants to go for it. Win or lose, you come out a better fighter when you fight this calibre of fight and that’s the main thing. He’s trained his butt off. He’s got every expectation of going into this trying to win.”

Arnott said there will be nine or 10 local fighters on the card, including Josh Shepherd and Eli Wyse. The toughman boxing champ Shepherd will be returning to the ring after several years between bouts, and Wyse, also a mixed martial arts and jiu-jitsu athlete, will make his boxing debut.

Also on the card is a grudge match between the coaches of the Sunshine Coast and Eastside boxing clubs.

Arnott thinks the Malaspina Theatre will be an excellent venue for boxing.

“Every seat’s perfect; it’s very classy in there…” he said. “It’s going to be a really nice, small, intimate venue. That’s what we wanted to do because we didn’t have time to promote a huge venue in a month. Fighters draw off the energy of the crowd and I’d rather see them in a smaller venue with real high energy.”

All seats for the event cost $50, which includes hors d’oeuvres catered by Vancouver Island University’s Culinary Arts department. Proceeds from the event will go back to Tomari Martial Arts for future travel costs for athletes. For ticket information, please call 250-751-3657.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com

Nanaimo News Bulletin

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