For 18-year-old Rosalind Canty, the sport of boxing runs through her bloodline. Her mother is a former boxer and her father is the current owner and coach at Border City Boxing Club.
“So I grew up here,” said Canty, minutes before putting on her gloves and hitting training pads held by her father.
She’s become more than just an observer. In fact, following one year of training, she’s getting to ready to compete at the Canadian National Boxing Championship in Brampton from Feb. 2 to Feb. 6.
Canty said, growing up, her parents didn’t want her getting into boxing and preferred she would focus all of her attention on school and other sports.
But after seeing boxing fights as an audience member, she felt the itch to experience stepping into the ring herself.
“I kept on begging my dad. So he got me into training and then quickly sparring. I got my first fight and I quickly began winning so I stayed into it,” she said.
Canty has fought nine times and has been victorious in eight of those bouts, she said.
“I lost my first fight. That was a big moment for me because it made me want to work harder so I wouldn’t have that feeling again,” Canty said.
“But then I went on to the Brampton Cup and I won Best Boxer award there which was really cool. I also beat the Irish Champion in Detroit and I’ve found two or three more times there. So those were some big moments for me .”
Also representing Windsor at the boxing nationals will be 18-year-old Jayden Trudell. He started training about five years ago and said he got into boxing after watching movies like Creed and Rocky.
“I started training at MTC [Maximum Training Centre] just for fun, to learn some self-discipline and learn how to fight a little,” Trudell said, adding he’s competed in nearly 20 fights and has only lost three times.
“I’ve fought a lot of good fighters. I’ve found some good fighters from Toronto, a six-time Irish champ and a lot of good fighters from Detroit.”
When asked what the biggest lesson he’s learned throughout his years of training, Trudell always said “being humble.”
“I’m really confident going into nationals. I put in a lot of work, run everyday and train three to four times a day,” Trudell said, adding the chance to represent Windsor on a national stage means “everything” to him.
“I love this city and I’m excited to fight for it.”
For their coach (and Rosalind’s father) Josh Canty, seeing the duo’s success has been a welcome surprise.
That’s because “Under-18” is its own age division, meaning once a boxer turns 18, they will often find themselves across the ring from someone in their athletic prime.
When fighting at a recent provincial tournament, both boxers had to experience fighting someone above the “Under-18” division for the first time.
“To move on to the Nationals is really overachieving … They are fighting against adults now,” said Josh.
“We hope we can keep that upward trajectory for both of them to level up to the national level and be successful there.”