Sunshine Coast Boxing Club (SCBC) fighter George Vourtsis became the inaugural World Boxing Council (WBC) Western Canadian Amateur boxing champion, winning a unanimous decision over rival Ron Pryce of Burnaby at the River Rock Casino in Richmond last Friday night, March 15.
The fight was a thriller from opening to final bells. The favoured Pryce and Vourtsis engaged in a back-and-forth slugfest that drew a standing ovation from the packed house after every round.
Early in the first round there was an accidental clash of heads that resulted in an inch-long cut beside Vourtsis’ right eye.
Undeterred by the heavy bleeding, Vourtsis stuck to his game plan developed by his trainer Todd Allain and narrowly out-battled the technically more proficient Pryce.
Allain managed Vourtsis’ cut well and at the start of the second and third rounds the cut was assessed by the ringside doctor who allowed the competitive bout to continue.
The cut was messy, but referee Dale Walters fell back on his years of boxing experience and recognized that the bout should continue.
“This fight was intense and at times vicious,” said SCBC founder Rick Shannon. “It was better than a Rocky movie. George is a real blood and guts warrior.”
At the end of the historic fight, Vourtsis was presented with a beautiful WBC championship medal by Canadian professional women’s Featherweight Champion Sarah Pucek to add to his growing collection of championship hardware.
Vourtsis now advances to the WBC Canadian Championships to be held in Langley in July against the still to be determined Ontario Golden Gloves champion.
After the hard-fought bout, the respect and sportsmanship was evident between the boxers.
“They fought their hearts out and then sat down together to watch the professional portion of the card,” said Shannon. “Boxing is a strange way to make friends, as the saying goes.”
When the SCBC hosts its War on the Shore boxing event on Saturday, April 27, at the Gibsons Curling Club it is hoped that Pryce will come to Gibsons to put his B.C. title on the line in front of Coast boxing fans.
For more information on the club or the upcoming boxing event, call Randy Hollett at 604-989-5180 or Shannon at 604-886-0928. The club is located at 1010 Chamberlain Rd. in Gibsons and is open from 7 to 8:30 p.m. week nights.