Boxing

Jeremy Pozo, left and Dimitrius Ballie face off during their 132 lb bout at the Sugar Bert Boxing National Qualifier 2018 Saturday at Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center. Pozo went on to defeat Ballie. Sun Photo by Tom O'Neill

The sweet science is returning to Punta Gorda.

It’s an event with an international flavor, bringing some of the world’s best amateur pugilists to compete in a qualifying tournament with ramifications that resonate powerfully within the boxing world. The action will take part in three rings on June 8-9. More than 300 boxers from the United States, Barbados, The Bahamas, Finland and Saint Maarten are scheduled to compete.

The Sugar Bert Boxing Title Belt National Qualifier will be held at the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center, June 7-9. The event is produced by Sugar Bert Boxing Promotions and sponsored by USA Boxing, International Amateur Boxing Association, Title Boxing, National Boxing Association, World Boxing Council, Impact Mouthguard and Raynelo Management.

“We are excited to be bringing this amateur boxing event back to Charlotte County,” said Bert Wells, Sugar Bert Boxing CEO, in a press release. “This is our third time hosting the Sugar Bert Boxing Title Belt National Qualifier in Punta Gorda, and the hospitality and professionalism keeps us coming back. The Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center and destination help us have a knockout event, and I’m confident the 2019 event will be bigger than the last.”

The event itself showcases an incredible array of talent, one that’s sanctioned by the USA Boxing Association, featuring an Olympic-style, double elimination tournament format, providing spectators with the opportunity to see a deep volume of athletes who have granite chins and unstoppable knockout power.

The level of fighters who compete throughout the year are renowned for their formidable punching power and aggressive fighting style, with both men and women having the opportunity to win title belts in their division and earn the right to advance to the National Championship, an event that will also be held in the Sunshine State, at the Park Inn by Radisson Resort and Conference Center in Kissimmee, Nov. 22-25.

However, it’s not just those boxers who are highly regarded for their dangerous punching power who will be on display, there are those who have a far greater considered approach and are able to adapt as fighters as the bouts go on, leaving spectators on the edge of their seat as they witness athleticism and an inordinate desire to be the best in a competitive environment brimming with an unrivaled enthusiasm.

“The Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach and Visitor and Convention Bureau is excited to partner again with Sugar Bert Boxing Promotions,” said Sean Doherty, Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach sales and sports marketing manager.

“It was a pleasure hosting the 2016 and 2018 national qualifier tournaments, and we look forward to having the community even more involved for the 2019 event.”

The tournament is replete with deep classes, with fighters competing in the bantam, intermediate, junior, senior, women, open men, novice and master divisions.

The Sugar Bert Boxing National Qualifier is open to the public. Doors open at 12 p.m. each day. VIP admission is $25 per day and seating is in the first three rows of each ring. General admission is $15 and children 4-8 are $10 each day. Seats are on a space available basis. Corporate sponsorship tables are available for $1,000 and are located in the most prime viewing area in the venue where they will have the best seats and access to some of the behind-the-scenes action. This package includes 10 VIP, two-day guest passes, and custom title belt. Tickets may be purchased online through Eventbrite on the Sugar Bert Boxing Promotions Title Belt National Qualifier — Punta Gorda, FL June 7-9, 2019 page.

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