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Mills makes Ford feel his power

Missing the target: Robert Somner, of Controversy Gym, ducks under a punch from Jaylon Roberts, of Forty Rego’s Gym, on the amateur undercard. Roberts won a split decision(Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Coleman Mills displayed his formidable power en route to a technical knockout win against Shannon Ford on the Redemption amateur undercard at the Fairmont Southampton on Saturday night.

Mills, of Forty Rego’s Gym, was caught with big right hand from Ford, of the Bermuda Sanshou Association, in the second round of their middleweight bout, but recovered well and floored his opponent with a similar punch in the third.

The pair first met in the ring at Berkeley Institute in 2016, Mills winning via technical knockout after Ford was unable to finish the final round because of a dislocated shoulder. Mills said he delighted to win in a far more conclusive manner.

“Shannon caught me with some nice shots and it fazed me,” Mills said. “I knew he had a nice, heavy right, but I stuck to the wicket and knew I had a stronger right.

“I knew I had to do something in the third round and I could sense he was tiring. The last fight I had with Shannon, I didn’t really count the win. I really wanted to finish it this time.”

Mills’s stablemate Andre Lambe returned to winning ways with a classy unanimous points victory over Alex Navarro, of Grants/Rival Gym in Ontario, Canada, in a welterweight contest.

It was Lambe’s first fight on home soil since February, having represented Bermuda at the Central American and Caribbean Games qualifiers in Tijuana, Mexico, in March and the CAC Games in Barranquilla, Colombia, last summer.

Navarro, who beat Michael Parsons, of Controversy Gym, at CedarBridge Academy in February, showed plenty of guts and determination but was not at the same level as Lambe.

“I felt really good and it seemed like it was in slow motion,” Lambe said. “All of the things that we worked on came off and my corner was on point.

“All of the experience I gained in Mexico and Colombia is paying off. I feel proud of myself and proud of my team.”

Parsons, who won several fights as an amateur in England, earned his first victory on the island after defeating a lively Jack Cabotaje, of Grants/Rival Gym.

After suffering a controversial defeat to Navarro in his previous outing, the former Bermuda footballer said he left no stone unturned during his preparations this time around.

“He was a tough competitor and very awkward,” Parsons said. “I had to take my time because he was bouncing and moving from side to side. “I was trying to time him because when you fight an awkward customer, you don’t want to just move forward and get caught. The fans want a knockout, but I try and show the science of the sport.

“Boxing is a thinking man’s game and it’s not just about going in their and brawling.”

Parsons added: “I was trying to be busier than last time [against Navarro]. I wouldn’t say I underestimated Navarro, but this time I had better training. I had more time to prepare.”

Tyler Christopher, who also competed for the island at the CAC Games last summer, outclassed Steve Wilshire, of Grants/Rival Gym, in a middleweight bout.

Christopher claimed his second unanimous points win over Wilshire, having fought the Canadian in February.

Another fighter from Forty Rego’s enjoying success was Jaylon Roberts, who triumphed in a fiery encounter with Robert Somner, of Controversy Gym. Roberts was awarded a split decision in the welterweight bout.

Ngai Franklin, of Forty Rego’s Gym, lost a split decision to Haroon Jalal, of Grants/Rival Gym, in a junior middleweight match.

Picking up a victory for Police Gym was Dejon Benjamin, who beat Eduardo González, of Controversy Gym, by a unanimous decision.

Also winning by a unanimous decision was Shane Basden, who beat George Cook, his Controversy Gym stablemate, by a unanimous decision.

Making her boxing debut, Krista Dyer, of the Bermuda Sanshou Association, came unstuck against Sara Buczek, of TNT Boxing in Ontario, losing via unanimous decision.

Dyer, who is primarily a kickboxer, said she struggled with the technical adjustments she had to make against Buczek, who has she had beaten and lost to in their previous meetings in mixed martial arts.

“It’s always a learning experience whether you win or lose,” Dyer said. “I was having a little bit of trouble with the postural change. Being a bit more upright felt a little foreign to me. My boxing journey is not finished, though.”