Fresh from a controversial draw decision in New York against American Jason Sosa, Nicholas ‘The Axeman’ Walters arrived in Jamaica last Saturday for an extended holiday in his hometown Anchovy, St James. “I will be in Jamaica for about a month. I will be taking it easy for the first week or so, just relaxing after my fight with Sosa. After that I will be getting back into training with my dad, as I cannot afford to get out of shape now, as 2016 will be a big year for me,” he told The Gleaner. The Walters versus Sosa fight has been the talking point in boxing circles for the past few weeks, following the surprising draw decision in Verona, New York, on November 19, in which nearly everyone except the three judges thought that Walters had won easily. One judge had Sosa as the winner 96-94, while the other two judges scored it 95-95, for a majority draw decision. The punch statistics favoured Walters as they showed that he landed 436 of 610 punches thrown, while Sosa landed 121 of 225. Walters also hurt Sosa in the fifth round but did not go in for the kill. Commenting on the fight, Walters said that there was no doubt in his mind that he had won his first fight as a super featherweight, and that he did not see his opponent winning more than possibly one round. What he has learnt from this experience he said, is that he has to “knock out all my opponents, so as to avoid any more bad decisions”. His father Job, who returned to Jamaica with him after being in his corner for the fight, said that ” it was a very poor decision. I think that Nick won every round. That is behind us now, however, and we are looking to the future”. He went on to say, “I think that it was a blessing in disguise, as we got more publicity from this bad decision than when Nicholas beat Donaire to become super champion. Everywhere we went, Nicholas was mobbed. He received a great welcome when he returned to Panama, and when we landed in MoBay, the people were all over us. It has been good, and the important thing is that he is still unbeaten.” Walters is now 26-0-1. A decision that has to be made by the Walters connections is whether he will fight as a featherweight at 126 pounds or as a super featherweight at 130 pounds in 2016. He told The Gleaner that when he returns to Panama next month, he will sit down with his team, go through all the options and make the decision. ” I can fight at either weight” he added.
Despite spending the majority of the season at the bottom of the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) standings, Waterhouse pulled off the great escape on the final day of the season, beating Boys’ Town 3-0 to secure their place in the top-flight for next term. Needing a win and other results to go their way, veteran striker Jermain ‘Tuffy’ Anderson rose to the occasion with a goal and an assist and also had a hand in the other. Anderson put the hosts in front after 35 minutes and had a major hand in the own goal in the 52nd. He then set up DeAndre Brown for the final goal on 83 minutes. Boys’ Town went down to 10 men after Wayne Ellis was sent off in the 63rd minute. The results meant that the Anthony Patrick-coached team finished the season in ninth spot on 34 points, one ahead of Rivoli and Cavalier – who both lost their final fixture – and ahead of Reno on goal difference. Anderson, Waterhouse’s leading scorer for the last four seasons, said: “I have to give God thanks because night and day I pray to Him. Even this morning, I woke up and gave Him a nice prayer, asking Him to guide and protect the team this day (Sunday),” he told The Gleaner. “I always believe in the Almighty … and Waterhouse is good now and I thank the Almighty God for keeping us up.” Waterhouse’s coach, Patrick, said they were always confident of winning their game and that other results would go their way based on the other match-ups. “We knew that we were going to get a victory … because of the support we would get from the community. They (fans) really came out today and gave us that extra boost,” he said. “When you look at the fixture and look at the two teams destined for the semi-final, Humble Lion and UWI, playing against the two teams at the bottom, we have to give ourselves a chance. So we knew once we got the maximum points, we would have a very good chance of staying up,” he reasoned. Club chairman Bruce Bicknell was obviously elated with the club’s last-minute dramatics. “I feel like we just won the league,” he said when quizzed by The Gleaner. NINTH SPOT