Mon, September 23, 2013

Clayton first Canadian boxer to win Olympic bout in eight years

By STEVE BUFFERY, QMI Agency


Custio Clayton celebrates after defeating Mexico's Oscar Molina Casillas in the men's welterweight Round of 32 at during the London 2012 Olympic Games, July 29, 2012. (MURAD SEZER/Reuters)


LONDON - Now all Canadian fighter Custio Clayton has to do is lay ‘The Hammer’ down and he’ll be one win away from an Olympic medal.

Clayton exacted sweet revenge at the Olympic boxing venue on Sunday afternoon by defeating Mexican rival Oscar Molina 12-8 on points — the first Canadian fighter to win an Olympic bout in eight years.

“It was amazing,” said Clayton, a native of Dartmouth, N.S. “All the hard work paid off. I had a tough draw. I thought, I had fought (Molina) before two years ago (and) I lost by one point.”

But Clayton said the day before his bout that he had come up with a game plan to beat his continental rival, which included throwing more combinations. Obviously it worked. The two boxers fought to a 1-1 draw after the first round, but then Canadian dominated the second round, out-scoring Molina 5-2, and then scored six more points in the third for the win.

“The first step was to win the first bout,” said Clayton, one of three Canadian boxers at these Olympics. “(But) I’m not going to jump into the next fight. I’m happy to sit down with my coach to come up with the game plan.”

The victory against Molina puts the City of Lakes Boxing Club fighter against Australian fighter Cameron (The Hammer) Hammond, and a win against the Aussie would put him one win away from some hardware. The last Canadian to win an Olympic medal in boxing was heavyweight David Defiagbon at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

Canadian super heavyweight Simon Kean of Trois Rivieres, Que. has his first bout on Wednesday against Tony Yoka of France. Three-time world champion Mary Spencer of Windsor opens her tournament Aug.6 after receiving a bye in the first round. Women’s boxing makes it’s Olympic debut in London.

steve.buffery@sunmedia.ca

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