Surprising Interest in Showdown - 23rd Mar 2012

Surprising Interest in Showdown The gloves are coming on for Dunedin's inaugural charity boxing match.
Contestants were lining up to step into the ring in the Dunedin Casino Southern Showdown, co-producer Doug Kamo said.

"Interest from potential contenders has been nothing short of surprising. We've already had more than 30 applicants, some of which will be a surprise to many in our community, as they have very high profiles in the city," he said.

Mr Kamo would not reveal details of contestants, but said the bouts would be representative of the community and evenly matched.

"Our focus is not on selecting the best or most accomplished boxers. It's not about who is the fittest or the strongest.

We want to select a range of bouts that are fair and represent people across our entire community," he said.

"The event is classified as 'social boxing', which dictates the compulsory use of headgear and 16oz gloves."

All boxers would also be required to undergo a pre-bout weigh-in and medical check, Mr Kamo said.

"Those who are sitting on the fence should get their applications in as soon as possible. We have space for 60 potential contenders to enter the contender boot camp on March 26.

The boot camp is six weeks and from this we will choose up to 20 to continue training for another nine weeks in preparation for their fight on the night."

The charity fight is a fund-raiser for the Malcam Trust and has been sanctioned by the New Zealand Professional Boxing Association.

Association secretary Pat Leonard said social boxing "was an opportunity for people to understand the challenges of fighting in the ring".

An information evening will be held at 6.30pm tomorrow at CrossFit Dunedin.

The match will be held at the Lion Foundation Arena at the Edgar Centre on July 14.

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