SEPTEMBER 12, 2022 | TORONTO, ON.Boxing Ontario is preparing to welcome athletes from across the province and country for the organization’s next tournament, the Legends of Boxing Series: In Honour of Pat Kelly on September 23-25 in Niagara Falls, ON.

The upcoming event is part of a newly denominated competition series called “Legends of Boxing”. Each tournament in the series will be dedicated to a Boxing Ontario legend in order to honour their life, legacy, and their indelible impact on the sport of boxing in our province.

The first Legends tournament is dedicated to Pat Kelly. Pat co-founded Niagara Falls Boxing Club in 1974, and in 1980, founded Shamrock Boxing Club where his reputation for moulding young athletes into champions became legendary. Top athletes under his tutelage included Mike Strange and Billy Irwin, and at one point, Pat had five Canadian champions at his gym at the same time.

Pat was selected to be a National Team Coach for the 1990 Commonwealth Games in New Zealand, the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, and he was appointed Head Coach of the Canadian team that competed in Africa in 1989.

Not only was he a legendary coach, but Pat was a well respected and beloved sports figure in Niagara Falls, a father-figure to many athletes, a hero and Carnegie Foundation Medal recipient, and boxing community builder.

On April 5, 2020, the Canadian boxing world was heartbroken by the news that Pat Kelly lost his battle to COVID-19.

Though COVID delayed major in-person celebrations of Pat’s life, it is now time for the extended boxing family to come together and compete in his honour.

“Following the return of an incredibly successful Brampton Cup in July, this will be our first major tournament hosted independently by Boxing Ontario since before the pandemic. This is also the beginning an extremely meaningful series, as we celebrate the legends we’ve lost in our province. Ontario is home to some of the greatest boxers, coaches, and officials in the world and it’s important we continue to acknowledge their invaluable contributions,” says Boxing Ontario President, Jennifer Huggins.

This Legends of Boxing Series tournament is also a qualifying event for the Boxing Ontario Youth and Junior C athletes who are competing for a position on the 2023 Canada Games team. Not only is competing at this tournament part of the tryout process, but it is also part of the overall vision to give the young athletes opportunities to reach their athletic goals and potentials.

The registration deadline for the tournament is September 13, and the Official Draw will follow on September 16. “We already have hundreds of athletes enrolled, and we’re excited to keep the momentum growing as we prepare for our Provincials in November,” continues Jennifer Huggins.

For more information on the upcoming Legends of Boxing tournament, including schedules, results, and spectator tickets, please visit

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About Boxing Ontario:

Boxing Ontario is the only governing body for Olympic-style boxing in Ontario. As such, it is affiliated with Boxing Canada (CABA), the International Boxing Association (IBA) and the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture, & Sport. Founded in 1972, Boxing Ontario encompasses over 150 clubs, 2,500 competitors, and more than 12,000 recreational members.

Media Contact:

Rebecca Freeman | Communications, Boxing Ontario | [email protected] | +1 (416) 426-7250

Interview Opportunities:

Interviews are available virtually, via email or phone with:

  • Jennifer Huggins (President, Boxing Ontario)
  • Board Members (contacts available upon request)

Lead photo from 2022 Brampton Cup. View PDF version of the press release here.