Blair takes next big step

Sports

Make it three straight pro fight wins for Brody Blair.

The Lyons Brook boxer is already looking ahead after recording his third professional boxing victory in as many bouts by defeating Juan Raygosa of Mexico by unanimous decision in their six-round main event that capped a rousing six-bout card at the Pictou County Wellness Centre.

It was a super-middleweight bout with a 168-pound weight limit that both boxers successfully met last Friday during pre-bout weight-ins. Blair registered 167.8 pounds on the scales, while Raygosa weighed in at 167.2 pounds.

Blair is focusing on being ready to box on a card scheduled for May 19 at Sydney’s Centre 200. After that, Blair will return to his annual regimen of lobster fishing.

He said he will rely on his father Robert Blair, who trains him and was among those in his corner on Saturday, to keep him ring sharp.

“I hope I can be ready for the Sydney event,” he said. “My father’s there for me to help me stay in shape. I’m always in some kind of (boxing) shape.”

Blair did not quite dominate his bout against the more experienced Raygosa, but he was able to utilize his height and reach to advantage to defend himself and score enough to win the three boxing judges’ approval on Saturday.

“He got a couple (of good punches) in,” Blair said. “He’s a veteran, and I hope I get as many fights in as he has.”

More than 1,000 fans reflected how they pined for a pro boxing event for years like the one on Saturday. They were in virtual unison in roaring their approval for the card and Blair’s performance.

Blair doubled as the card’s promoter and remarked about how he may eventually leave future promotions to others.

“It was so much work,” he said.

Part of the preparation was the impact the card’s scheduling had on the Rotary Club of New Glasgow’s pizza festival that was moved from April 21 to April 28. Blair bought $1,000 worth of the event’s tickets to compensate for the inconvenience.

“They moved their date for me, so I hope they have an extremely successful event,” he said.

It was also a rewarding evening for another Pictou County resident connected with boxing.

Aaron Kinch trains Kyle McKeil of Halifax, who won his 130-pound weight division match by unanimous decision against Jorge Castro to improve his record to 8-3.

They are also preparing to enter the card next month in Sydney.

“We trained hard for this match and it showed,” said Kinch, who operates the Westville Boxing Club.

In other bouts, Mohammed Debbaugh defeated Adrian Arenas by technical knockout in the second round after knocking Arenas down twice.

Adam Ayoubi won a unanimous decision against Justin Blades, Joey Laviolette won a unanimous decision against Recardo Rojas and Ryan Rozicki won by TKO against Alvaro Enriquex.


Brody Blair, left, found Juan Raygosa to be a crafty veteran and an elusive target despite winning the six-round main event. (Goodwin photo)