Power Punching Shepherd returns to SUPER 8 boxing fold
Power Punching Shepherd returns to SUPER 8 boxing
One of New Zealand's most fearsome amateur punchers has come in from the cold and returned to boxing in the punch for pay grade. Eketahuna shepherd, Lance Bryant has signed on to throw down in the SUPER 8 Cruiserweight last man standing tournament, on the undercard of the Shane Cameron vs. Kali Meehan Super fight on November 22nd at the North Shore event centre.
The 33 year old boasted an enviable list of KO scalps when family commitments forced him to leave the game in 2006. The four time New Zealand champion had KO'd NZ born Australian Olympic quarter finalist Adam Forsyth (now 10 and 0 as a pro), 2006 Commonwealth games Gold medalist Brad Pitt (15-1,0 professionally and narrowly lost via split decision to world title contender, Shane Cameron in the same year.
But, at a time when options were limited for aspiring professional boxers, Bryant found he couldn't continue training like a professional while on an amateur's non-existent paycheck.
"I had a young family to attend to, boxing didn't really offer any financial pathways at the time, so putting food on the table for my family came first."
The then 26 year old hung up the gloves and opted for life of tending stock on sheep farm while focused on supporting his then two kids, now four, aged 14,15, 5 and 2.
"If your head isn't 100% focused boxing is a sport where you can get hurt. For me my family was my top priority. Fighting is a selfish sport but it wasn't giving me anything back.
“But things are different now I'm in the prime of my physical life and ready to lace up the gloves once again and have a crack at the SUPER 8."
Bryant has already had three bouts in 2014 and long time confidant, Paul McSharry believes the SUPER 8 format offer the perfect platform for the stocky power puncher to make a statement.
"Over longer duration, Lance's time out of the sport might count against him, but three rounds sprints are tailor made for Lance's pure punching power
“When he was 16, I remember telling him he had a gift and not to waste it, 16 years later SUPER 8 is providing him with the platform to see that come to fruition.”
SUPER 8 Match maker Mark Keddell see's Bryant's power providing plenty of headaches for a field which already includes Australian # 1,3 & 6 in the field, with at least one other top five Australian to be added.
is about risk and reward, every fight matters and the
potential match ups between the fighters we are bringing in
are extremely exciting.
“There are no easy fights, no free passes, just old-fashioned Donny-brook brawls, and Lance is the past master at catching you cold and I expect a few of the favorites to have their cages rattled.”
Height: 1.81 m
RECORD: 3 wins (2 KO), Rounds boxed: 9 KO%: 66
• 4 time NZ
Amateur Champion (44 wins, 6 losses)
• KO’d Commonwealth Games Gold Medalists Brad Pitt and Adam Forsyth in the Amateurs
• Lost to Shane Cameron by split decision (giving away 8 kilos)
• Former training and sparring Partner for Shane Cameron
• Huge puncher off either hand.
• Returned to boxing in 2014 with 3 quick wins, having to choose to work full time for his family in 2006
• Super 8 three round sprints perfect for his style. Dangerous puncher.
• Played Rugby for Wairarapa Bush (brother plays for the Manuwatu Turbos).
SUPER 8 SUPER FIGHT NIGHT EVENT DETAILS:
Name: SUPER 8 SUPER FIGHT NIGHT – EVERY FIGHT MATTERS
Date: Saturday, November 22, 2014
Venue: North Shore Events Centre, Auckland
Time: Doors open 6pm, event begins 6:30pm, broadcast begins 7pm
Main Event SUPER FIGHT: WBA Oceania Heavyweight Title (10 * 3 min rounds)
Shane “The Mountain Warrior” Cameron vs Kali “Mean Hands” Meehan
Premier SUPER FIGHT: WBA / WBO / OPBF Cruiserweight Title (10 * 3 min rounds)
David Aloua (NZ. World Ranking #15) vs Daniel “Biff” Baff (Aust. World Ranking #14)
8 Man Cruiserweight SUPER 8: Last Man Standing Tournament - featuring Brad "Hollywood" Pitt
Former world # 10, Number one ranked Cruiserweight in Australia 2006 Commonwealth Games Gold Medalist, who will be one of the favorites for the tournament.
Other participants in the tournament Australian # 3 Daniel Ammann, Australian # 6 Anthony McCracken, David Tua trained NZ Champion Monty Filimaea, and former 4 time NZ amateur Champion Lance Bryant with three more top Australasian Cruisers to be announced in the coming weeks...