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Moncriffe looking at 3-1 in Wray & Nephew Contender Series

Observer writer

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Team Jamaica's Devon “Concrete” Moncriffe will begin his quest for title number two at the Eighth annual Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum Contender Boxing Series in the Welterweight title challenge when he opens against Team Canada's Tyler Wilson at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium today.

It is the fourth fight of the 15-fight Contender Series and a three-fight card is proposed, including the main event Welterweight clash between Moncriffe and Wilson. Fight time is scheduled at 8:30 pm.

Meanwhile, Wilson, a mixed martial artist, is a last minute replacement for Daniel Roach. Little is known of Wilson in boxing circles as he being a professional MMA specialist with a 3-1 record. He will be making his debut as a professional boxer tonight.

At the weigh-in at Sure Time Medical both boxers declared that their preparation went very well and that they are prepared for a good showing.

“That I will show when the time comes,” he said, referring to what he has in store for Moncriffe.

He added: “To destroy 'Concrete' you will just have to use combinations of a sledgehammer.”

Moncriffe has his eyes set on performing to the best of his ability now down to his natural weight class.

“I'm looking at 3-1,” said Moncriffe, an obvious reference to the 2-1 lead held by Jamaicans in the eight-fight preliminary competition.

Moncriffe said he has been preparing for nearly three months and the build-up has “been going good”.

He added: “I feel good, I don't underestimate anyone. Every fighter must be careful. Some fighters go into the fight and underestimate the next man and lose.

“When you don't know something about your opponent you've to be very careful, you can't take anything for granted,” he reasoned. “You've to go in little by little, and if you see the opportunity you've to take it.”

Moncriffe, has already been to one other final, two semi-finals and two quarter-finals, and will once again seek to join Sakima Mullings as the only boxer to have won two Contender Series titles.

This could be a watershed year for Moncriffe. The 41-year-old boxer campaigned in the Contender Series as a junior middleweight last season but failed to get past the preliminary stages after losing a split decision to the hard-hitting Canadian Larone Whyte in five rounds at the CBA. It was the earliest he had been eliminated, having reached semi-finals two years before when he was upended by eventual winner Kemahl Russell.

Given his preparation, Moncriffe has lofty expectations for 2018.

“I'm in good shape, better than in 2013,” he admitted. “I'm going for the whole series, I'm not looking just one fight. I'm going for the whole four and I'm going to work for it.”

Moncriffe has a ring record of 21 bouts — 12 wins with four KOs, eight losses and one draw.

All fights in the first round will be over five rounds. In the second round, the fighters go at each other over seven rounds, and the final match will be fought over 10 rounds.

The winner will, in addition to the title and belt, take home a purse of $2 million. The second-place boxer will collect $500,000; third $250,000; and fourth, $200,000.

The main bout will be broadcast live on TVJ, beginning at 9:30 pm.