|Chevelle "Fist of
Steel" Hallback, born September 3, 1971, 5'5", and fights from 126 -
135 lbs., is probably one of the most best-kept secret in women's
boxing. She created one of the biggest upsets when she defeated Bonnie
Canino in Canino's own turf on March 6, 1998.
The fight with Canino could have easily
been the biggest upset of the year, if Christy
Martin had not been defeated by Sumya Anani in a 10-round untitled
fight in December of 1998.
Unfortunately, in the sport of boxing,
the best athletics in the world are not necessarily going to get the
"best" opportunities. In fact, it is amazing that some of
the pay-per-view fights have been plagued with 0-3 fighters, and some of
boxers have been basically ignored.
Hallback began her boxing career in 1996
and then had her first pro fight six months later. Her pro debut was in
Miami in January of 1997 against Connie Plosser. She defeated
Plosser with a TKO in the first round.
In fact, the fight lasted 47 seconds.
With that vast experience as a pro, Hallback was offered a fight with the
infamous Lucia Rijker on March 22, 1997 in
Corpus Christi, Texas.
Hallback told WBAN that she was offered the
fight with a short notice of a few days, and was unaware who she was
fighting until she saw an HBO special on female boxing the night before
she was due to fly to Texas for her fight. Hallback said that she
had been told that Rijker had only three fights and that she was not very
good. Hallback had been deceived.
Hallback said that she learned from this
experience and that she would never take a fight unless she was ready to
Hallback then changed to a different
trainer and fought Judy Mayrand in May of 1997. She defeated Mayrand in
Tallahassee, Florida by a TKO, 1:07 in the first round.
On September 20, 1997, Hallback fought
Bethany Payne and won by a first round TKO.
On March 6, 1998, Hallback fought Bonnie
Canino for the WIBF Intercontinental Super Featherweight title in
Fort Lauderdale. The outcome was surprising to most who knew little
of this "Fist of Steel". Canino struggled through the
every round, and ended up stopping after the sixth round after being cut
over the right eye and on the left eyelid.
Most would have thought that this fight
would have firmly established Hallback as one of the leading
boxers.....but she did not have another fight until June 11, 1999.
Hallback fought Hayde Nunez of Puerto Rico, and won with a four-round
On 04/26/00, Hallback fought Doris
Hackl for the IFBA Jr. Lightweight title, and she defeated
Hallback by a Majority Decision in a 10-round decision. As Ryan
Wissow reported "An excellent fight, and a good clash of styles.
Hallback was the aggressor and clearly the much harder puncher, but the
taller southpaw Hacki was very precise with her combinations, although she
sometimes slapped with her punches. Hallback missed with some wild
punches, but she also managed to land several bombs and she had Hackl
clearly in trouble on a couple of occasions. But Hackl came on strong
later in the fight as Hallback began to slow down and lunge with some of
her punches. Hackl counter-punched pretty well. Hackl couldn't hurt
Hallback with a baseball bat, but she showed good stamina and fought a
pretty smart fight. Although I feel that Hallback did enough to win the
decision, the fight was VERY close with rounds that could have been scored
for either fighter, and Hackl was awarded the decision, which the crowd
boo'd." Other boxing fans that wrote into WBAN said that
the fight was a bad decision, and should have gone to Hallback. Looks like
a rematch in in the making! Hackl is now 4-0, and Hallback fell to
ONE ON ONE
WITH CHEVELLE HALLBACK - FEBRUARY 8, 1999
by the Roaming Reporter
RR: What got you into boxing?
CH: I always wanted to box. I can
remember when I was very young looking at tapes of Ali saying to myself,
"I can do that!" But at that time there was not female
boxing. So when did learn of female boxing, about 10 years later, I
jumped right on it. I trained for just 6 months before turning pro.
RR: Why did you turn pro, without fighting
CH: I could not get any fights at the
amateur level. That is why I turned pro so quickly.
RR: Do you have any upcoming bouts?
CH: I am suppose to fight April 11 in
California against Chris Kruez.
RR: Where do you see yourself in a year, in
In a year, I see my career really taken
off. I want to put myself on the map as one of the "pound
for pound" best woman fighter out there. In
three years, I want to be a household name. I want to
have a world champion belt in all three women sanction body. I want to
RR: Who is on your "hit list" to
CH: I really want to fight Melissa Salamone! I
have heard rumors of her saying I cannot fight and she will beat me
anytime. So I am calling her out. But she will not
fight me! I will fight her anytime! I want to fight her
in her hometown! That is how bad I want to fight her. I also want a
rematch against Lucia Rijker. Other than that, I want to fight the best
fighters out there. I want to fight anyone that will get in the ring with
RR: Do you know of any fighters that have
been ducking you?
CH: Yes! Female fighters have been
ducking me! For example, Melissa Salamone! Why? I really do
not know! Some say they will not fight me unless the
money is right. Melissa camp is asking for 50,000 to
fight me! Why! I am not the one with a world champion belt. I have only 5
fights under my belt period! So why are the girls so afraid? Or should I
say why are the promoters and managers so afraid to put their girls in
front of me. I really do not blame them. If I had to fight me I would be
afraid too. smile) (Me too, double smile. T.L.Fox)
RR: What kind of preparation to you do to
prepare for a fight?
CH: I do not do anything special to prepare
for a fight. I train hard and fight the fight in my mind the night before
the fight. Yes, I am ready to go 10 rounds, but I do not want to fight for
a championship belt right now. I want to get some more fights under my
belt before I fight for a championship belt. I want to build up my name so
when I fight for a championship belt it will have a better chance to be
seen on TV and there will be a lot of viewers meaning more money.
RR: Do you study your opponents before a
CH: I do not study my opponents. I train
to fight all type of fighters so it does not matter who I fight. I
will be ready. I am a natural at what I do and my body is like an animal
and the weather. My body adapts to how the fighter fights. I can box, I
can fight inside, I can fight dirty, whatever is brought to me in the
ring, I have something for it. So no, I do not
study my opponent.
RR: What is going through your mind right
before you step into the ring to fight?
CH: Right before I get in the
ring, I am so nervous I feel like I have to go to the
restroom! I am asking myself, "Do I really want to box? Is boxing for
me?" I hate that feeling. So what I do
is listen to music. I have to listen to music before a fight or I
will go crazy! But when I enter that ring, and we meet in the middle of
the ring, I am calm and ready to have some fun.
RR: Do you have a game plan when stepping
into the ring?
CH: Once inside the ring my boxing
talent, instincts, and my trainer advise determines how I fight.
RR: What are your strength, and weaknesses
as a fighter?
CH: My strength is my defense
skills. I am very hard to hit. I also hit very hard as well. I
guess that is also a strength. smile) I Would like to improve on my
left hook and going to the body.
RR: Who was your toughest opponent?
CH: My toughest opponent was to Lucia
Rijker. I fought her my second fight. I did not know how
to use my boxing skills and I was not in shape when I fought her. I did
not know who she was until the day before the fight when I saw a special
on her on HBO. I learned a lot from that. First, do not take a fight
unless you are ready and stay in shape. If I had half of the
knowledge I have now when I fought that fight, the outcome would have been
much different. So I have no shame for losing that fight because with no
boxing experience, I gave one of the world's best female fighters a lot of
trouble when I fought her. The next time around for Lucia will
be trouble, trouble, trouble!
RR: How do you think that you can promote
yourself as a boxer?
CH: My trainer wants me to talk bad
about other female fighters to make them want to fight me. I know the men
do that to promote a fight but it is not my character to do that. I think
by doing interviews like this and fighting more will
promote me. I love doing interviews. I wish I can do more. I do not have a
manager but my trainer is always going around telling people what a great
fighter I am and that no one will step in the ring with me. I guess that
is promoting me.
RR: What is your take on what women boxing
is doing right now?
CH: There are good changes and bad changes
that is currently happening with female boxing. The good thing is the few
fights that are shown on TV. It is not that many still but
more then what it was in the past. The bad is politics!
Plain and simple. Let the girls fight and stop babysitting them. That is
really putting a damper on female boxing.
RR: How do you handle your boxing career
along with other responsibilities in your life?
CH: It is very hard to balance life with
my boxing career. I have a full-time job because bills have to be
paid. To be the best you have to train hard! After
training and work all you want to do is sleep. I find time to be with my
family on the weekend. During the week forget it.
RR: What do you do in your free time?
CH: In my free time I like to
sleep! smile) I also like to get fan mail and read it!
RR: What would you like to say to other
CH: Be dedicated to your goal, train hard, and
run, run, run, and run!
RR: What would you like to say to your
CH: To all my boxing fans and anyone else, I
would like to hear from you so please email me and I will email you back.
My email add. is firstname.lastname@example.org