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One on One Interview
with Shakurah Witherspoon

by Sue TL Fox
June 15, 2002


TL Fox: How did you first get into Boxing?

Shakurah: At first my husband, Steven Witherspoon started a boxing program in Williamsport, PA. The gym was called the "Terrible Timís Raiders of Boxing Club." It was a program to get young boys off the streets. I started training about six to eight months later in that club.

TL Fox: How long have you been in boxing? And, did you participate in other contact sports, i.e., kickboxing, etc., before getting into boxing?

Shakurah: I turned pro in November of 1997. As far as kickboxing, no. But Iíve been in other sports, such as softball, basketball, and volleyball.

TL Fox: I noticed that when you first started boxing, you were doing very well. Then you had a string of losses, can you tell me what you think happened?

Shakurah: Well after the first couple of fights, I looked good and was very tough. And then the calls stopped coming. So I had to take a new look on the subject. Either I had to fight whoever called or not fight at all. Iím a mother with three children to raise.

TL Fox: Do you feel that fighting so many hometown fighters gave you bad decisions? If so, which fights do you think you were robbed?

Shakurah: Yes, most of my fights had been in their backyard. (Tennessee) Deb Nichols, (Allentown, PA) Karen Nye, the two times (Harrisburg) Leah Mellinger, (Allentown, PA), Laura Killewesi.

TL Fox: Out of all of the opponents you have had, who was the toughest in your opinion?

Shakurah: Bonnie Canino.

TL Fox: When you take fights, how many days notice do you usually have before accepting the fight?

Shakurah: Sometimes four to six days, and sometimes two to three weeks.

TL Fox: With the fact that you have 27 losses on your record, and very few wins in comparison to those losses, is there anything that you would like to do differently now or in the future?

Shakurah: To make more money and try to get some more wins under my record....so that I can get the big money fights.

TL Fox: Do you decide to box a fighter, or does your manager tell you who you will box?

Shakurah: Well he makes the calls or receives the calls and gets the information and then we both discuss together about taking the fight.

TL Fox: Why are you having so many problems in finding some medium-type bouts? Why almost always some of the very best boxers?

Shakurah: One reason is because Iím a very tough fighter and also because Iím a southpaw.

TL Fox: Do you feel that when you enter the ring, you are there to win, or there to make the distance?

Shakurah: When I enter the ring, Iím there to win, and hope to have the fight end early. If I connect with a good punch but if itís a tough opponent then to go the distance.

TL Fox: Can you give details in how you got your last fight with Lucia Rijker?

Shakurah: Well we were asked a year ago, so they kept us in mind. And then three days before the fight in February they called us after her first two opponents fell out. I felt that the referee stopped the fight too early. I was fighting back and Lucia never really hurt me.

TL Fox: How much longer do you think that you will stay in boxing?

Shakurah: As long as I am healthy. I figure maybe another 2 to 2 Ĺ more years. I just turned 34 on April 16, and my mother is raising my three kids. So as long as I keep boxing, Iíll be able to send money home to support them. Home is Connellsville, PA.

TL Fox: What does your brother-in-law, Tim Witherspoon (who is also a boxer) feel about you fighting?

Shakurah: He says that he is proud of me, and if you want to ask him to answer this question, you may reach him at his camp.

TL Fox: If you were to say anything to boxing fans, what would you like to tell them.

Shakurah: To please treat female boxers the same as men. We also have rights too, and give a much better show then men now a days.

TL Fox: If you could give any advice at all to other women boxers, what would you advise them to doÖ.or NOT do?

Shakurah: To take your time. Donít rush into fights, if you're not ready.

My Comments about this interview with Shakurah. Shakurah was very sincere, and a down-to-earth boxer.   Shakurah was proud of the fact that she goes the distance with these world champions. She is proud of a belt that she earned in 1997 when she fought a five-rounder in New Jersey, and she has the same aspirations of making more money and being something special in the sport. WBAN would like to thank Shakurah for taking the time to be interviewed.

Other Shakurah Witherspoon links

Page last updated: Tuesday, October 12, 2004


Boxer Interview by Sue TL Fox



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