Conquering New Territory With The Friday Night Fights ‘To End Cancer’ At The Gentlemen’s Expo
The Fight to End Cancer is a growing initiative incorporating sport and fundraising in amateur, fun and friendly bouts. In addition to their annual gala which features ‘White Collar’ men and women with no prior boxing experience, the Fight To End Cancer was showcased at the first ever Friday Night Fights ‘To End Cancer’ as part of this years Gentlemen’s Expo.
On Friday November 24th, fighters squared off at the Gentlemen’s Expo held inside the Metro Toronto Convention Centre to fight for the good cause in ending cancer. The sanctioned Olympic boxing matches were hosted by ‘Showdown Joe’ Ferraro and our Official FTEC Ring Announcer, Barry ‘Bad Boy’ Pletch. The event featured such Canadian provincial and national title holders as Sara Haghighat-Joo (Canadian Champion), and Mark Smither and Kassandra O’Reilly who both fought on the inaugural Fight To End Cancer card in 2012.
“The Gentlemen’s Expo has been going on for five years and it keeps growing every year and we wanted to add a new element to it this year. We noticed last year our main attraction was mixed martial artist George St-Pierre. We noticed a lot of ticket sales and buzz about him, so we kept going on along that fight world and our founder Luca del Rosso approached a company called Fight to End Cancer. The executive director Jennifer Huggins organizes these gala fights a few times a year and it was the perfect fit because she had fighters wanting to fight and we had a venue ready to host.”
~ Vice-President of marketing Jon SindenThe main event, featuring Kassandra O’Reilly vs. Sara Haghighat-Joo, was celebrated with a win by Haghighat-joo. The Co-Main featuring Mark Smither vs. Thad Ridsdill was named fight of the night, with Smither taking home the win in a hard earned split decision. The undercards included: Robert Serrano vs. Aden Djama; Jessica Brugess vs. Amanda Galle; and Moe Zawadi vs. James Hughes.
Ringside, the Fight To End Cancer team was busy raising funds through t-shirt sales, raffles and a 50/50 draw. Before the action kicked off in the ring, some Gentlemen’s Expo attendees made a small donation and were treated to 5 minutes of boxing instruction in the ring from 3 time Canadian Champion Rodolfo “Latin Heat” Velasquez.
“This was an incredible step in the next leg of the journey with our Fight To End Cancer Family. To be able to showcase the sport we love for a cause so important to everyone was a dream come true! Thank you to the team at The Gentlemen’s Expo for joining the fight and taking FTEC to the next level”
~ Virgil Barrow, Fight To End Cancer FTEC2018 Head Coach and Director
By all accounts the Friday Night Fights to End Cancer was a rousing success raising awareness and funds for cancer research. Thanks to our friends at the Gentlemen’s Expo for their support.
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