As soon as Evelyn “Li’l Evil” Calado stepped into the boxing ring, she was hooked.
“When I first got in there, I thought I’m never going to stop doing this again, I love it that much, it was kind of instant,” said the 22-year-old Calado.
“Li’l Evil” has high hopes to go provincial and then international
Currently Calado is focused on getting the fights she needs to make the provincials and is training to make the women’s Canadian boxing team.
“[In five years] I want to be on that international stage. I am too late for the 2016 Olympics,” said Calado. “The Olympics would be the next step, maybe in 2020.”
Fighting stereotypes in the face of family and friends
Her family and friends didn’t have quite the same reaction to the sport.
“They still have a hard time believing that this is what I love doing,” she said.
Calado believes that the negative portrayal of boxing in the media is part of the problem.
“It’s a lack of knowledge about the sport,” she said. “It’s much more skill based, than a violent sport as deemed by society,” she said.
Locally trained Calado has sights set on boxer Rosalia Calla
Calado started boxing three years ago at Astoria Boxing Club soon to be Eastside Boxing located on Commercial and Hastings Street.
Calado is currently training with David Schuck who started boxing competitively in 1986 and has been coaching amateur and professional boxers for over ten years.
“He works locally, I found him and it was awesome,” Calado said.
‘Lil Evil’ sees a bright future for herself in the sport of boxing.
“I know the girl I need to beat, I have fought her in an exhibition fight,” Calado said.
Calado needs to defeat Rosalia Calla, the current women’s B.C. Amateur Boxing Champion, to make it on the B.C. provincial team.
Calado will be contending with Calla next fall.
Challenge to find challengers in her class-weight
So far she has only had three fights but Vancouver has a small pool of women boxers especially in Calado’s weight category.
“Most females are in the 125 pound class, I fight at 106 pounds, it’s not easy to find competition,” said Calado.
“In B.C. on the west coast there is not much competition.
“A majority of my fights will be in the interior and down in the states,” she said.
Calado is charging straight ahead towards the national championships.
Once she climbs that hurdle, the world of boxing will open up many doors.
“Once you reach nationals they run training camps and I’m opened up to international competition,” she said. “When you get to that national level, it opens up a lot of doors to sponsorship and fights.”
Reported by Tanya Hill
Listen to Calado tell reporter Tanya Hill about her family’s reaction to her sport and the media’s negative portrayal of boxing.