HK pro boxer Raymond Poon, of DEF Boxing Gym, is determined to come back stronger after recent loss

HK pro boxer Raymond Poon, of DEF Boxing Gym, is determined to come back stronger after recent loss

The local fighter lost to Li Xiang of China at the Asian Professional Boxing Championship earlier this month

raymond1.jpg

Raymond Poon has been a professional boxer for three years.
Photo: Kelly Ho/SCMP

When we met Raymond Poon Kai-ching at  his home boxing gym two weeks after the Asian Professional Boxing Championship, we could hardly recognise the local star.

The bruises and cuts on his face from his last set  of matches had mostly healed and, compared to the fierce warrior we see  in the ring, the 23-year-old seemed  rather shy. Once the interview began, however, Poon’s usual perky self shone through again.

Hong Kong boxing fans had pinned their hopes on Poon to clinch a historic youth world title at the championship on May 12. However he lost to Li Xiang of China in a unanimous decision of 96-94, 99-91, and 97-93. 

Reflecting on the arduous 10-round bout, Poon said Li was the strongest opponent he had ever faced. Li almost sent him to the mat in the fifth round with a series of direct blows to his ribs. Li had outboxed him with better combinations and had been aggressive. 

Raymond said Li Xiang (right) is the toughest opponent he has ever taken on in his career.
Photo: Kelly Ho/SCMP

“It’s a match I will remember for the rest of my life. Without the home crowd support, I don’t think I could’ve held on till the last round,” said Poon, who has been  a professional boxer for three years. Poon’s current record stands at seven wins, four of which are knockouts, and two losses.

Yet when he first started, he was told he had no potential and should just quit. He changed gyms, and now he’s been hailed as the man to fill champion Rex Tso Sing-yu’s gloves.

His family was also against him boxing as well, because they were concerned for his health and safety. Not to mention, Poon was not being paid when he was boxing as an amateur, so the sport did not seem like a viable career path. “In my parents’ eyes, I was only hurting myself without gaining anything,” he said. 

Poon’s life changed when he started going to the DEF Boxing gym in 2015, where he was given a chance to go pro. He had to give up the diploma he was working towards at Yi Jin, including the school fee which he had already paid, but believes he made the right decision.

His parents also came around after watching one of his professional matches, and realised that what matters the most is their son’s happiness. “When I was younger, my parents and teachers would tell me what to do.

Raymond's parents came to support him during the Asian Boxing Championships, which was held on Mother's Day.
Photo: Kelly Ho/SCMP

Boxing is the first thing I decided to pursue for myself,” said Poon, who has to regularly train in the Philippines and Thailand, as his sparring partners in Hong Kong are not skilled enough to prepare him for professional matches.

When Poon trains with foreign boxers, he says he feels as if he doesn’t know boxing at all. This is because those boxers began their careers much earlier.

Many of them have already competed in more than 100 fights before stepping into the world of professional boxing. “I must accept the fact that I started off much later than those in other countries, and sometimes they just treat me like a joke,” he said. 

Still, he said the more disheartening part of training overseas is losing time he could’ve spent with his family and friends. But he also said that if he had to choose again, he would still take this path, despite the friends he’s lost along the way. “I don’t regret my decision, it’s just a bit sad when I think about it sometimes,” said Poon. 

Following the championship, the new star finally has some time to recharge before future fights. But even a break is a double-edged sword. He’s fully aware of the work he’ll have to put in to get back into fighting shape.

“My footwork, punches, and body coordination need more work, so I have to go over the basics again,” Poon said. “My development over the past three years might have been a bit rushed, it’s time to slow down a little before I start thinking about future matches.”

Edited by Nicole Moraleda


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This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
Rolling with the punches

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5 Comments

Markonys Sophie

08:06am

Ycou an also watch summer universiade boxing event in following link
UniSport Australia has announced the teams for the Emerging Opals and Emerging Boomers ahead of the 2019 Summer Universiade to be held in Naples, Italy from July 3-14.

Also known as the World University Games, the tournament is the largest multi-sport event apart from the Olympic Games and features almost 10,000 athletes who are currently completing university studies competing across 18 disciplines.

https://livesportworld.com/summer-universiade-2019-schedule/
The Emerging Opals welcome back Abigail Wehrung, Alex Sharp, Keely Froling and Lauren Scherf who will aim to defend their gold medal winning feats from two years ago in Taipei.Australia has announced the teams for the Emerging Opals and Emerging Boomers ahead of the 2019 Summer Universiade to be held in Naples, Italy from July 3-14.
https://livesportworld.com/world-university-games-live-stream

That success follows on from a previous gold medal in 2007 as well as bronze medals in 2005, 2009, 2011 and 2013.

https://allevents.in/naples/live-summer-universiade-2019-live-stream/800...

Markonys Sophie

13:28pm

UniSport Australia has announced the teams for the Emerging Opals and Emerging Boomers ahead of the 2019 Summer Universiade to be held in Naples, Italy from July 3-14.

Also known as the World University Games, the tournament is the largest multi-sport event apart from the Olympic Games and features almost 10,000 athletes who are currently completing university studies competing across 18 disciplines.

https://livesportworld.com/world-university-games-live-stream
The Emerging Opals welcome back Abigail Wehrung, Alex Sharp, Keely Froling and Lauren Scherf who will aim to defend their gold medal winning feats from two years ago in Taipei.Australia has announced the teams for the Emerging Opals and Emerging Boomers ahead of the 2019 Summer Universiade to be held in Naples, Italy from July 3-14.