Smith draws Campbell for 'Contender' showdown
Leroy Brown, Gleaner Writer
Fresh from his recent victory over veteran Anthony Osbourne, Rikardo Smith, representing the Yellow Team, will go against another experienced boxer, the Green Team's Donovan 'Police' Campbell, tonight, as the Wray and Nephew Contender series continues at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium.
Fight time is 8:30 p.m. and there will be a live television broadcast, starting at 9:30 p.m.
The series has now moved into the quarter-final stage and, from the eight boxers who remain, the top-seeded four are Tsetsi Davis, Sakima Mullings, Rikardo Smith and Ricardo Planter.
They have drawn their opponents from the pool of other winners who are Donovan Campbell, Kevin Hylton, Milton Anderson and Devon Moncrieffe.
The outcome of the draw will be announced each week and the final four in the competition will share nearly two million dollars in prize money, with $1-million going to the winner, $500,000 to second, $250,000 to third and $200,000 to fourth.
Promoted by MJK Productions, sanctioned by the Jamaica Boxing Board of Control and sponsored by J. Wray and Nephew, Claro, TvJ and Foska Oats, the series has been attracting a lot of public support and the venue is packed every night.
Tonight's fight promises to be a very interesting one.
Campbell, whose name was drawn by Smith, has a 12-4 record and earned the right to move into this round with a controversial decision over Patrick Taylor.
In one of the closest fights in the series, Campbell faded after winning the first three rounds of the six-round contest. Many persons thought that Taylor, who had a strong finish, was the winner.
However, Taylor had lost a point for an infringement and that cost him the fight.
Campbell, who is 42, will have another stern test tonight. He is more experienced than the 25-year-old Smith, who has a 3-1 record, but his younger opponent is one of the best all-round boxers in the competition.
Smith has a jab that earns him a lot of points, is a good counter-puncher and is also a very good defensive fighter.
Campbell, on the other hand, is an excellent in-fighter and a good technician.
In a six-round contest, a fast start is necessary and the boxer who is more positive tonight should win. Campbell would have learnt from his encounter with Taylor and will quite likely pace himself better in this fight. It will be a very competitive encounter with the two fighters matching their boxing skills all the way.