The summer heat usually has a cooling effect on the Lower Mainland’s boxing scene.
But Friday’s Clash at the Cascades 49 at downtown Langley’s Coast Hotel’s ballroom is taking place in the middle of the summer, when very little amateur boxing is happening.
“We have always done an event in mid-summer,” says Dave Allison, who conceptualized and organizes the popular boxing series. “This summer’s clash is great; we often have trouble making matches in mid-summer. Many boxers take a break at this time, especially many top elite level boxers. Not so this year.”
The main event of the July 14 card is a long awaited for B.C. title match in the super lightweight division between Ilya Kovalenko of Sugar Rays, a Vancouver club, and Jeremy Cook of Maple Ridge-based Carlson Gracie Academy.
The Kovalenko-Cook fight has been on again and off again for some time, Allison said.
Kovalenko is ranked No. 1 and Cook is second in the BC Combsport BC rankings.
The five-round tilt will be at the 140-pound limit.
“Both fighters are known as punchers and without a doubt this will be an exciting match,” Allison said.
Dan Csaszar’s ring return is something everyone is excited about, Allison said.
The 24-year-old will be turning pro in the new year as a super middleweight. After a four-year layoff, Csaszar, who trains with Langley Boxing and James Allison, is taking on B.C. super middleweight champion Brendon Kim of Port Kells in a catch-weight, non-title bout.
Csaszar held the B.C. light heavyweight title when he left the sport, but was never a real 175-pound boxer, Allison said, adding, “he belongs at 168 pounds.”
“Kim-Csaszar will be a four-round fight and with the depth of talent at both 168 and 175 pounds inboth the pros, and amateurs locally, making the outcome of this fight relevant, this fight creates all sorts of possible options going forward,” Allison said.
Cody Robertson of Ibarra’s Boxing in Surrey is a rising star in the local boxing scene, Allison believes.
Robertson holds the City title at 154 pounds and will soon be competing for a B.C. title at that weight.
At Clash 49 he rematches Marcus Davies of Sunshine Coast Boxing. Davies is a middleweight who was a runner up for the 2016 fighter of the year award, and his last last bout against Robertson ended up being a draw.
Another noteworthy contest will be a rematch between Jerome Serrano of Port Kells and Donovan Cridland of Madkatz, a Kelowna club, in a welterweight match.
Joining Csaszar from the Langley club will be lightweight Alex Veloz and super middle Kevin Dhanda.
“We also have heavyweights as well as a couple of 100-pound 12-year-olds in action,” Allison said. “Every now and then we hit the mark, and this is one of those cards — we will have 11 to 12 fights.”
Doors open at 7 p.m., with bouts at 7:30 p.m., with tickets available at the door.
General is $40 and kids 12 and under are admitted free.
“Free parking, card girls and bar service add to a great night at the fights,” Allison said.