Beck eyes world title defence - and beyond

Published 6:00am 31 January 2023

Beck eyes world title defence - and beyond
Words by Nick Crockford

Beck Hawker will defend her WIBA world featherweight title at Eatons Hill Hotel next month knowing it may be a stepping stone to the “next level”.

The former Caboolture resident faces American Carisse Brown over 10 two-minute rounds on February 25, on an Ace Boxing Promotion.

It will be Hawker’s first defence of a belt she won in September, at the same venue, when out-pointing unbeaten Holly Towl.

The fight against Brown was scheduled for December 3, but Hawker, 31, needed longer to recover from a niggling injury.

She is now fit and while fully focussed on Brown, who is 36, Hawker says big opportunities may await those high in the world rankings.

“Carisse has fought on big cards. She has power and looks in top condition,” said Brisbane-based Hawker, “she is bigger than me and can box.

“But I want to defend this title just as badly as I wanted to win it. There is certainly an extra motivation - it could lead to the next level.”

That is the featherweight belts of the main boxing associations, four of which (WBC, WBO, IBO, IBF) are held by Amanda Serrano, from Puerto Rico.

Serrano faces Mexico’s WBA title holder Erika Hernandez in New York on Saturday (US time) hoping to unify the entire 57kg division.

However, there are suggestions Serrano - 35 this year - may retire leaving top-ranked fighters with a chance to snap up her titles.

“I want to be active this year and this girl (Brown) is protecting the next level,” Hawker said.

“If Amanda Serrano retires, it will open up opportunities, but you need to be in the right ranking positions to have a chance.

“I have been sparring against different girls and we’ve changed things in the camp a bit to freshen it up. I’m really enjoying it.”

Hawker, who used to train at Caboolture Boxing Club, will defend her WIBA title unbeaten in six professional fights, after a 44-bout amateur career.

Within 13 months of turning pro, Hawker won the ANBF (Australian National Boxing Federation) Queensland, Australian and Australasian featherweight titles.

Brown, from Florida, has won seven of her 10 pro fights. All have been in the US, bar the last two in Mexico.

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