Texas Tough Miranda Reyes Not Fazed By Daunting Task



Texas Tough Miranda Reyes Not Fazed By Daunting Task

Miranda Reyes is tough. You want proof?

Look no further than her September war with Yazmin Reyes. She punched, took big shots, punched, boxed and punched some more.

It was an impressive show of grit by the Texas slugger. So it’s no accident that she is hard-nosed and rugged. She grew up that way.

“I became a boxer because of my older brother,” Reyes said. “We used to fight a lot as kids, which made me join a boxing gym. At that time I was the only female in my gym so I was sparring guys. Being the only girl made me push more, do twice the work so I can actually get up there.”

Reyes won’t be fighting her brother this weekend, but she will be fighting the WBC and IBF’s top ranked lightweight when she meets former British Youth Olympian “Sweet Caroline” Dubois in a 10-round women’s battle. It is part of the Joshua Buatsi-Dan Azeez light heavyweight card at Wembley Arena in London (2 p.m. Eastern, Saturday, Peacock).

Buatsi vs Azeez

Reyes v Dubois will support Joshua Buatsi (left) and Dan Azeez, seen during a press conference at BOXPARK Wembley, London. Picture date: Thursday February 1, 2024. – Photo by Icon Sport

“I’m not nervous at all,” Reyes said. “I’m walking into my opponent’s backyard. Of course, I have all odds against me but I’m here to pull off the upset. I never thought I’d get an opportunity like this but I’m here and I’m going to make the best out of it.”

Known as “La Alacrana” (the Scorpion), Reyes was born in El Paso and made the trek southeast to Houston as a young girl.

Things were tough as a teenager. Juggling school, boxing and outside distractions was overwhelming, and she often dozed off in class. She stayed the course, graduating from high school and attending college.

But boxing was her dream. She grew up watching the greats like Julio Cesar Chavez and Manny Pacquiao. But also women warriors like Jackie Nava and her September opponent, Rivas.

Reyes turned pro in 2018, earning a decision over Larizza Martinez in Laredo.

In the six years since, she has fought in Florida, Nebraska, Massachusetts and Mexico, going 7-1 (3 knockouts).

Her most noteworthy wins were over Rivas in her last fight and Jaime Clampitt in June. Both decisions were unanimous.

But Dubois represents a leap in quality.

Sweet Caroline, with an  8-0 (5 KOs) record, is the sister of heavyweight contender Daniel Dubois.

She was a Youth Olympic and European champion for Britain who competed in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The lefty turned pro in February 2022 with a points win over Vaida Masiokaite. In her last fight in September, she outpointed Magali Rodriguez, 22-6-4, in the first defense of the secondary IBO belt.

Dubois is skilled and poised having fought at the highest of amateur levels.

“I know she’s a tough fighter,” Reyes said. “Of course I know she’s an Olympian and that she’s a southpaw. At the end of the day, I respect her as a fighter but when the bell rings I’m going to lose all respect for her.”

Reyes also knows she won’t be just fighting Dubois. She’ll be fighting Dubois and 12,500 of her countrymen.

Still, Reyes isn’t fazed. She’s ready for this. Afterall, she grew up Texas tough.

“I’ve been working my butt off in the gym every day since I first put the gloves on at 14 years old,” she said. “I’ve fought some great fighters and former world champions. I believe it’s my time and I’m here for it.”

@MatthewAguilar5 on Twitter