Kenny Lally will have a familiar face in his corner for his next boxing match.
“I’ll be fighting in May in Regina,” the local boxer said, “and (coach) Bob (Pegues) has his daughter and grandkids there, so he’s making the trip with me, and will be in my corner.”
The event in May is a doubleheader, with members of the Canadian team squaring off against American fighters.
“We fight at the Ken Goff Memorial the first night, which is a big dinner show, and then I face the same guy a couple of days later in the Mayor’s Cup.
“I’m not sure who I’ll be fighting.”
Whoever the American fighter is, Lally knows it won’t be someone he saw at the Ceho Aponte Tournament in Puerto Rico last week.
“The Americans and the Cubans weren’t there,” he says. “They had another tournament they were fighting in.”
Lallly ended up with a bronze medal at the tournament, losing to a fighter from the Dominican Republic in the semifinals. He says it was a good bout, but the other fighter was definitely better.
“My first two bouts, the other boxers were bigger, but I was more skillful. The guy from the Dominican Republic, he was just too big and just as skillful.
“He ended up winning the gold. He gave the guy from Brazil a real licking in the final.”
Lally was also happy that a cut he got in a fight at last year’s Canadian championships didn’t re-open.
“It will never completely heal, but it didn’t cause any problems this time.”
Based on what he saw in Puerto Rico, though, Lally still has his sights set high for the Pan American Games in Toronto in August.
“I’m definitely in the running for the gold medal at the PanAms. I need to get bigger.”
To that end, he’ll be spending some time with strength and conditioning coach Derek Hanson at Simon Fraser University.
“I’ve been working with him for the last five years. He’s really helped to build my explosive power.”
Lally says he’s “walking around at my fighting weight”, which means he does have some weight he can work with to try and develop more power and put on a few extra pounds.
He knows what his strength is, though, and doesn’t want to lose the speed and skill.
“Bob told me, ‘You can teach power, you can’t teach speed’.”