Sep 14, 2013 Sports
Can this be a lease on life for Terrence Alli?
Asks Michael Benjamin
How many times have we read of the rags to riches stories in the boxing fraternity that have raised our hopes of attaining wealth beyond belief one day? ‘Iron’ Mike Tyson earned in excess of USM$350 during an illustrious career yet was reduced to a poverty stricken state that forced him to engage in bankruptcy proceedings.
As a matter of fact, history is replete with pugilists who after earning hundreds of millions leave the sport penniless and in dire straits. Most boxers have been known to be ghetto urchins that have had to bare their fists to survive everyday so fighting became a way of life hence their success in the boxing ring.
Boxers have been known to make miraculous transitions from rags to riches but have faltered in the academic department. As such, the big time promoters and managers have been less than honest and have used their fighters as pawns while raking in the larger percentages of the purses. When they are finished squeezing that boxer to a pulp, they move on to other gullible pugilists leaving the former one broke and struggling for existence.
Boxing organizations are there to overlook the smooth running of the sport and, as in the case of the USA, the State Athletic Commission entertains complaints from disgruntled boxers against managers, promoters et al before launching investigations and resolving disputes.
Recently, there has been a positive shift in the arc when World Boxing Council President Jose Sulaiman announced the inauguration of an initiative where officials of his organization have designated approximately $US250, 000 for the first distribution of aid, to some 30 former world champions, to guarantee these heroes don’t have to endure old age in abject poverty and misery.
The WBC Charitable Fund has gathered proposals on behalf of former champions around the world, who’ve fallen on hard times. They’ve been placed before the Selection Committee of the WBC Charitable Fund and the Nevada Community Foundation, who research, decide and allocate to those pugilists in dire need of such support.
The money for the Charity Fund was derived from a WBC auction of exquisite HUBLOT watches, in which twelve of the greatest WBC Champions were presented with superb time pieces.
Further, twelve exact replicas went under the hammer and earned one million dollars which was thrown into the kitty to help the cause.
According to a circulated release from Sulaiman’s office, “It is in this way, the World Boxing Council fulfills its dream and its pledge, proving to the World that the sport of boxing NEVER forgets the great boxers of its history. And that with the years of life that God grants them, they can and will live with dignity and respect.”One wonders whether officials of the Guyana Boxing Board of Control (GBBC) can make representations on behalf of former world rater, Terrence Alli!
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