Former bantamweight and super bantamweight champ Kaliesha West is Back
By Sindy Amador
It was really amazing to see and enjoy the comeback of the super star.
The professional female boxer is a former 3-time WBO bantamweight champion and an IFBA super bantamweight world titlist making her come back after 3 years of inactivity.
West has done it all in boxing starting at only 10 years old she has always been guided and trained by her dad Juan West. Her overall amateur record was 98- 10.
She made her professional debut as an 18 year-old in 2006 against a fighter Suszannah Warner who would eventually become a world champion. It was taking those types of risks that she entered the fight game.
As a professional she made her mark by winning world titles and defending them. She was always willing to travel to other countries even at the risk of losing decisions by hometown judges. Her last loss in Canada took a lot out of her.
“I felt it wasn’t worth it to keep traveling outside of the USA and chance not getting the decision. I really just wanted to fight in my home country but the opportunities weren’t there,” said West, 29.
Following a three year lay-off things have now changed. Thanks to the Olympians, the Moreno Valley prizefighter finally sees there is equality for the women to be out on major promotions. It’s really inspired her to make a comeback and give boxing one last round at it.
It was a great match between Kaliesha West (17-2-3, 4 Kos) vs Kirstie Simmons (8-2) especially considering the long three years without fighting in the ring.
Though competing in a heavier weight class at 128 pounds, West looked superior in skills and power.
The lefty Simmons tried her best but West was patient and smart in landing meaningful left hooks to Simmons chin that were about to put her on the canvas a couple of times.
As the fight continued Simmons became more aggressive but West was blocking and connecting the more effective punches with a beautiful right hand that stumbled Simmons.
Simmons was competitive and brave and landed a fair share of punches, but not enough to cause any damage. West shined even though she seemed rusty for some people, which is totally normal due to the three years outside the ring.
The judges scored the fight 59-55 once and 58-56 twice in favor of West.
After the win West gave a big thanks to all the Olympians who turned professional. They truly opened the doors and endless opportunities for female boxing.
West said she’s not staying at 128 pounds a weight that was the suggested weight from her team to get her wheels spinning with only 5 weeks of training camp. The next fights will be in a lower weight class where she feels more comfortable.
Female boxing gets a boost with the re-emergence of West.
*writer Sindy Amador is a former light flyweight world champion now retired and living in Riverside, Calif.
(Photo by Al Applerose)