By Clayton Goodwin
Vivien Parsons has approached the new boxing season with quiet confidence. Although she came into the summer break on a high note with victory in the national championships, in various international competitions here and overseas, as well making her first (victorious) appearance in her country’s vest, she knows that there are trials as well as opportunities in the weeks ahead. As we ate, and she nibbled, Vivien was already in training for her contest in Madrid this month.
To say that Parsons lives for boxing would be a serious understatement. She came to the sport after winning a gold medal at judo in the London Youth Games, and has remained loyal to her first club, Afewee in Brixton, South London, and to her coach/trainer Bobby Mills. Vivien’s progress through the ranks has been steady and impressive. In spite of experiencing the inevitable heart-aches of losing the disputed decision and stoppage by unusual cuts, nothing has daunted her ambition, and her love of the sport.
Vivien Parsons is noted for her quiet demeanour, and at an early stage of her career she was chosen as the “poster girl” for the National Lottery investment in boxing. When not actually fighting, herself, she is in frequent attendance at promotions supporting fellow-pugilists such as professional club-colleague cruiserweight Isaac Chamberlain and the friends and acquaintances she has made through sparring and training (or even some of those with whom she has seriously crossed gloves). For the record, Chamberlain is set to challenge Mikael Lawal for the national title at the O2 Arena in Greenwich of 21st October.
It has been a quite a hectic summer for Ms Parsons. Even with her own strenuous training regimen and coaching private clients, Vivien has found time also to visit her elder sister studying in Germany and her uncle/aunt in the Czech Republic. Then it was back to more training in Sheffield. The young lady should be clocking up an impressive portfolio of air and rail miles. The approach of the boxing season could almost seem like a light relief.
Being around so many rings and gymnasia Parsons naturally picks up a lot of news and gossip about what goes on inside the ropes (and even outside). Although well-informed about the names, the events and the controversies, Vivien prefers to keep all that where it belongs – inside the boxing business. And quite right, too. Perhaps some other pugilists (and reporters) would be well advised to do likewise.
Just before we left the restaurant, Vivien Parsons, who had maintained an abstemious eye on her food intake, did help herself to a chip from my plate. Please do not blame CaribCommx if a certain young boxer, the only female in the team, fails to make the weight – by the density of one potato-chip – at the weigh-in to the competition in Madrid. However, Vivien has promised to keep an eye out, and a cocked fist ready, for any Spanish official, president of otherwise, who tries to give her an inappropriate public embrace.
Hasta La Vista, Vivi