Miccio set for charity fight
Nelson mayor Aldo Miccio is preparing to rumble in the boxing ring against a yet-to-be-named local businessperson.
Mr Miccio is one of 26 amateur Nelson boxers pulling on gloves in 10 weeks for a corporate fundraiser, "similar to Fight for Life".
Fight for Victory has been organised by Barry Galbraith to raise funds for a youth boxing club in Victory, where he is a volunteer trainer. Last night the event's call up was announced at a brawn-packed McCashin brewery, though Mr Miccio's opponent was kept secret and would not be revealed until fight night.
The mayor, who is one of a few people who does know his opponent's identity, said he will be nervous on the night, but with boxing stock in his own family he was keen to impress.
He said the fundraiser was for a great cause, and was a bit of fun, although he had been taking training pretty seriously over summer because his mum had never let him box as a kid. "I broke 100kg for the first time in my life," the right-handed light-heavyweight said last night. "If I can get one or two in, it will be all right. As long as I don't get knocked out."
Mr Miccio and the other 25 brave, male and female, mostly local contenders, will fight three two-minute rounds of professionally refereed boxing in front of an estimated 2000-person Trafalgar Centre crowd.
They are all amateurs and all adults, and will spend the next 10 weeks undergoing a gruelling boxing training programme to bring them up to fighting fitness.
All proceeds from the event will be invested in the Victory youth boxing club, run by Victory School teacher Paul Hampton since 2011.
Mr Hampton said he has seen the club grow from 20 boys and girls in 2011 to 60 today, and although the YMCA had been great hosts, he hoped to eventually build or buy the young boxers a new gym.
He said the club's focus was on improving children's fitness through the discipline of boxing, as well as teaching self-esteem and developing confidence.
"It's about giving kids from the Victory area something positive to do, in their own time," he said.
The June 1 fight cards will pit rugby against league, code versus code, club against club. A radio DJ will fight a beer brewer, and a Nelson orthodontist takes on a Motueka policeman.
"I guess most of the guys that are doing it have gotten behind it because they believe it's such a great cause," Mr Galbraith said.
"It's a fantastic cause. The beneficiaries will benefit enormously from the funds we raise from it."
The New Zealand Professional Boxing Association would oversee the Fight for Victory, Mr Galbraith said, with stringent medical safeguards and safety a priority.
He said the event had potential to become an annual fundraiser.
Fight for Victory will be at the Trafalgar Centre, June 1, 7pm to 11pm.
Corporate tables and stand seats can be bought through Ticket Direct.
FIGHT FOR VICTORY CALL UP
Kent Inglis (Nelson Rugby Club) vs. Brett Thornally (Marist Rugby Club); Joey Ngaruhe (Stoke Cobra League Team) vs. Hoani Takao (Richmond Rabbits League Team); Bill Havili (Nelson Bays Rugby) vs. Deon Charles (Richmond Rabbits League Team); Scott McCashin (McCashin Brewery) vs. Jordan Brannigan (Radio Network)
Colin Benge (Nelson Bays Rugby) vs. Rangi Ngaruhe (Stoke Cobra League Team); Daniel Reed (Bayleys) vs. Struan Bennet (Harcourts); Ben Nalder (Marist Rugby Club) vs. Josh Ellery (Nelson Rugby Club); Aldo Miccio (Nelson Mayor) vs. ? (will remain anonymous until the event) Cruiserweight Division: Rob Crawford (Motueka Police) vs. Andrew Marriott (Nelson Orthodontics); Andy Sanson (Russet Engineering) vs. Bevan Irons (Air NZ)
Scott Gibbons, Aus (Gibbons Group) vs. Cameron-Ryan Francey (Results Gym)
Tonia Alan (Haven Realty) vs. Sarah Derecourt (Media Works); Tracey Patching (Haven Realty) vs. Lauren Heaphy (Heslops Group)
Trainers: Barry Galbraith, Dion Hall, Steve Mitchell, Murray Fifield, Dean Rackley
- © Fairfax NZ News
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