Team Jamaica’s Sakima Mullings defeated Team Canada’s Larone Whyte by split decision to move into the semi-finals of the Wray and Nephew White Overproof Rum Contender Boxing Series at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium on Wednesday night.
Mullings, who entered the Junior Middleweight contest at a weight of 153 lbs against a bigger Whyte at 155 1/2 lbs, was never at any stage of the fight looked in danger of losing the contest. Howerver, he was made to work for every point from the rookie Whyte from the opening bell.
It was an excitement that the nearly full house enjoyed as at no time in the fight did the less experienced Whyte backed away from the combustion — displaying confidence and alertness against the vastly more experienced and accomplished Mullings.
But the Mullings had the measure of him and came away from the five-round clincher with an unflustering split-decision. Judges Lindell Allen and Ransford Burton scored the bout 49-46 and 48-47, respectively, in favour of Mullings. Canadian judge Brian Beauchamp saw it 48-47 for Whyte.
Following the conclusion of this four-fight quarter-final rounds there are still another two seven rounders before reaching the final over which the finalists will clash over 10 rounds to lift the Wray and Nephew White Overproof Rum Jamaica Junior Middleweight Contender title with the major share of $3 million going to the ultimate champion..
“Tough fight (and a) slippery opponent, but I thought that I was the better man tonight (Wednesday night) and did enough to win the fight,” said Mullings.
Asked how he felt about not getting the nod from of all three judges. A smiling Mullings replied: “Judging is subjective. Whyte is his countryman (Brian Beauchamp) and he may just see things a little different in his favour (Whyte’s),” said Mullings.
Whyte, meantime, is happy with his performance.
“To tell the truth I thought that I did well. I started to box and got some good shots in, but I should have made it a rougher, tougher fight. The thing is going into the semi-final round I wanted to look cleaner up there, but I should have taken it to him,” he said.
The under-card amateur bouts threw up surprising results as Patrick Sahadeo of the JDF Gym surprised Ricardo Carter of Dreamscape Gym by the split decision route, while a fit looking Ricardo Beckford of the Oracabessa Gym got the better of Carlton Reid of St Thomas Gym in a Light Middleweight contest.