Jamaica's Ashley lifts WBC title
Leroy Brown, Gleaner Writer
"This is a dream come true," said an elated Alicia Ashley yesterday, as she savoured her Saturday-night victory over Texan Christina Ruiz, at Hunts Point in the Bronx, New York. Jamaican-born Ashley defeated Ruiz by unanimous decision in the 10-round fight to take home the World Boxing Council (WBC) super bantamweight title.
Ashley, whose record is now 17 wins, nine defeats and one draw, made an unsuccessful challenge for the title on August 20, 2009, when she dropped a controversial majority decision to Marcela Acuna, in Argentina. Since then, she said, her goal had been to take this particular title home.
"The WBC title is the one most highly regarded, and that is why I wanted to win it. For me, this is mission accomplished."
Her opponent, Ruiz, who entered the ring with a 6-3-1 record, with four knock-out victories, was seen as a dangerous power puncher. Ashley said that she was aware of this, and, as a result, was wary when the fight started.
Things turned quickly during the fight.
"The strange thing is that when she caught me, I did not have any problem absorbing her power punches, but after I landed some solid left hooks and an uppercut early in the fight, I could see that she was hurt, and backed away. She became very cautious after that, and I did not have any problems with her. I used my quickness to good advantage and she could not find any answers. She just could not catch me with anything solid, and I think that she only won one round,' Ashley said.
The judges agreed with her, as one judge scored the fight 100-90, another 99-91 and the other 98-91, a clear indication that Ashley was the superior fighter on Saturday night.
When asked what was next for her, she said, "Other people want to go to Disneyland, I want to go to Jamaica. I have not been home for a while and I want to get there very soon. The next dream to be fulfilled for me is a title fight in Jamaica."