29/05/2024

WIBA World Featherweight champion Beck Hawker lands a clean jab against Hollie Towl, September 2022 - Photo: Lachlan Carroll and Amy McCaul/Combat Analytics

Beck Hawker believes American Carisse Brown will 'bring fire' to their April 1 showdown in Brisbane, but is willing to walk through the flames to retain her WIBA World Featherweight title.

The date of September 3 2022 is one that will happily live in the mind of Beck Hawker (6-0, 2 KOs), long after her days of boxing competition are over.

On the night in question, the 31 year old combined ring generalship with her trademark aggression to capture the WIBA World Featherweight title from British technician, Hollie Towl (9-1, 6 KOs).

Adding another championship to a growing collection was not the only asset gained in the wide 10 round decision win, though.

Accompanying the prized blue belt, came a number of valuable in ring lessons. Teachings, both physical and mental, fostered only in the heat of combat and worth their weight in championship gold.

Despite a wide margin on all three cards (99-91, 100-90 x 2), the bout was a grueling, dogged affair, one that saw both competitors unwilling to give an inch.

As a result, reflection has gone hand in hand with the newly acquired crown.

“I took a lot from that fight,” Hawker told The Inner Sanctum.

“It was a good fight, I loved it. A good, tough fight. Technically, she’s a fantastic boxer.

“I got hit with a few shots that I didn’t necessarily need to take and thankfully she had not much power. If I was in there with a bigger puncher, it could’ve caused me a bit of drama.

“So I took that away and we’re obviously working on my defence a bit more.”

Now gearing up for her next assignment, an April 1 showdown with her WIBA title up for grabs, the need to be more elusive is at the forefront of Hawker’s mind.

Challenging her in the main event of ACE Boxing’s first show of 2023 in Brisbane will be America’s Carisse Brown (7-3, 4 KOs), a fighter who has shown a willingness to trade with tough competition.

For evidence, look no further than the Florida native’s last opponent, 2020 Olympic silver medalist, Beatriz Ferreira (2-0, 1 KO). Although Brown was stopped in the second round, the loss itself is clear indication that she is a more than game competitor.

Moreover, her only other losses have come via decision to current IBO World Bantamweight champion, Melissa Oddessa Parker (6-0, 2 KOs) and former WBA World Super Featherweight title challenger, Vanessa Bradford (7-4-2).

For this reason, Hawker believes that if she is successful, she will have a greater understanding of her own place in the sport’s upper echelon.

“To me, I look at her as like a gatekeeper. She’s pretty much at that next level. I think she’s just shy of that World level,” the Queenslander surmised.

“It’s a good challenge for me so early on, because I need to know if I can mix it with people like her.

“She’s had 10 fights, seven wins and three losses, but her losses have been against World rated opponents on these massive cards. She’s not afraid to take these big fights.

“Her last fight was against an Olympian, so I think she’ll be coming into this fight with a lot of confidence.

“I’m sure she’ll bring fire.”

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While WIBA honours will be on the line in the contest, there is added bonus up for grabs.

As of December 2022, Hawker was rated number nine with the IBF, one of boxing’s four main governing bodies.

By continuing on her winning ways this year, she believes that she will both solidify her championship reign and continue the climb to a major title.

Understandably, such a possibility has been a source of immense motivation.

“It’s a defence of the WIBA [title], but it means a lot more to me than that,” Hawker said.

“If you can be in the position, the fights for the bigger belts are going to be there towards the end of this year, maybe next year. This year needs to be about getting myself into the best spot for that, so that’s what we’re doing. 

“Beating Carisse would push me up as well. I’ve still got a lot to do in the sport and I still want to keep pushing.

 “I just want to keep knocking on.”

For now, attention is solely on progressing to the finish line and leaping another hurdle in the form of Brown.

When quizzed about how victory is obtained, there is an exuding confidence that goes far beyond any thought of overlooking an opponent.

Beck Hawker is confident; in her style, in her preparation, in entering the combat arena.

Better yet, she is made for it.

“The same as how I always do, just that unrelenting pressure and the desire and the will to grit my teeth and fight and win. That’s how it happens,” she predicted.

“I’m always fit enough to go that full 10 rounds at a pace that I like to set which is very, very high.

“I’m always preparing for 10 round war.”

The WIBA Featherweight title clash between Beck Hawker and Carisse Brown serves as the co-main event of ACE Boxing’s April 1 show at Brisbane’s Eatons Hill Hotel, and will air live on BEIN Sports/Kayo.

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