10 Prominent Boxers Born In Jamaica
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Jamaican Boxers - Mike Mccallum (Photo: Ring Magazine)
by Venesha Johnson | Associate Writer
Jamaicans are known to have a slew of talents, but did you know that boxing is one of them? Here is a list of some of Jamaica’s well-known boxers.
- Mike McCallum- A retired boxer from Jamaica named Mike McCallum won three world championship titles between 1984 and 1995. He held the WBA super welterweight belt from 1984 to 1988. McCallum won a world boxing title on October 19, 1984, making him the first Jamaican boxer to do it. Known as "The Body Snatcher" for his ferocious body punching, McCallum who was 26 at the time, defeated Irishman Sean Mannion at Madison Square Garden in New York City, USA, to claim the vacant WBA junior middleweight title. Mike McCallum was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2003.
- Simon Brown- The former professional boxer from Jamaica, Simon Brown (Mantequilla) was born August 15, 1963, in Clarendon, Jamaica. On February 16, 1982, Brown faced Ricky Williams in his professional boxing debut. He was 18 years old at the time. He went on to become a two-weight world champion.
- Glen Johnson- Glen Johnson, a retired Jamaican boxer who was born on January 2nd, 1969, held the Ring magazine, IBO, and IBF light heavyweight titles. He received the 2004 Fighter of the Year award from The Ring magazine. Glen Johnson had a fruitful career and developed a reputation for applying constant pressure on opponents.
- Trevor Berbick- Born on August 1st, 1954, Trevor Berbick was a Jamaican boxer famous for taking part in historic fights, such as Muhammad Ali's final match in 1981, which Ali lost. Before losing the title to Mike Tyson the following year, he also held the WBC heavyweight championship in 1986. In addition, he is remembered for helping Jamaica win the bronze medal at the Pan-American Games held in Mexico in 1975.
- Dillian Whyte- Dillian Whyte, who was born in Jamaica on April 11, 1988, immigrated to the UK when he was 12 years old. He began as a British kickboxing champion before switching to boxing. He was given a two-year suspension for using an illegal substance. He reportedly became a father for the first time at the age of 13, making him one of the youngest fathers ever.
- Donovan Ruddock- Canadian boxer Donovan Ruddock, was born in Jamaica on December 21, 1963. Ruddock, who was well known for his extraordinarily hard punching, was listed among the 100 greatest punchers of all time by The Ring magazine. Some of his most prominent fights are his battles with Mike Tyson in 1991 and Lennox Lewis in 1992.
- Nicholas Walters- Nicholas Walters, a Jamaican boxer born on January 4, 1986, represented his nation at the Central American and Caribbean Games, where he took home a bronze medal. Nicholas Walters was also a gold medalist at the Caribbean Championships in 2005 and 2006. He was the WBA featherweight champion from 2012 to 2015.
- O'Neil Bell- Born on December 29, 1974, this Jamaican professional boxer competed from 1998 to 2011, when he retired. He was the undisputed cruiserweight champion in 2006 followed up by his victory for the lineal cruiserweight championship in 2007. In total, he had 27 victories and 4 defeats. He, unfortunately, passed away on November 25, 2015, after he was robbed and killed in Atlanta, Georgia.
- Alicia Ashley- The former WBC female world super bantamweight champion is Jamaica’s most decorated female boxer. She was born in Jamaica on August 23, 1967, before moving to the US with her family. Her older siblings include former world kickboxing champion Devon Ashley and chess grandmaster Maurice Ashley. She has had 24 wins and 12 losses.
- Gary Mason- Gary Mason was born in Jamaica on December 15, 1962, before moving to England. He competed professionally from Chatham, Kent, England. One of Mason’s most notable achievements was his win for the heavyweight British title. He was well-known for his physical strength and punching power, making him a top-ten challenger. On January 6, 2011, a bike accident in South London claimed Mason's life.
There is much more to come from Jamaican boxers, as the sport has been seeing continuous growth on the island over the past few years and currently has over 10 registered boxing gyms.
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References & Sources For Jamaican Boxers
- (no date) The top-ranked boxers of all time from Jamaica. Available at: http://www.ainsworthsports.com/boxing_fighter_rankings_by_nation_jamaica.htm (Accessed: November 30, 2022).
- Alicia Ashley (2022) Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alicia_Ashley (Accessed: November 30, 2022).
- O'Neil Bell (2022) Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O%27Neil_Bell (Accessed: November 30, 2022).
- Williams, M. (2022) Special moment: When Mike McCallum first became World Boxing Champion: Loop Jamaica, Loop News. Loop News. Available at: https://jamaica.loopnews.com/content/special-moment-when-mike-mccallum-first-became-world-boxing-champion (Accessed: November 30, 2022).
- Writer, C. (2022) Simon Brown: Record and stats, MartialBot. MartialBot. Available at: https://www.martialbot.com/boxing/s/simon-brown.html (Accessed: November 30, 2022).
Jamaican Boxers | Written: November 30, 2022
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