KYE MACKENZIE RETURNS TO THE RING
By Tom Watt on Aug 31 2017
In December last year, Kye MacKenzie put in a scintillating performance to beat the previously undefeated , Dylan Emery (17-0-0 at the time) to claim the Australian Lightweight Title with a convincing TKO victory. The majority of pundits at ringside, myself included, had tipped Emery to edge the win but the intensity of MacKenzie’s onslaught was too much for the BodyPunch Gym prospect as Mackenzie blasted his way to victory.
Following that win, MacKenzie looked in line to secure himself some bigger fights, he called out Emery’s stablemate Billy Dib ringside as well as mentioning George Kambosos Jr in the following weeks but unfortunately these fights did not materialise and MacKenzie eventually announced he was taking some time from the sport. Fast-forward to 9 months later and Mackenzie is set for his return to the ring as he takes on Filipino lightweight, Joel ‘Mulawin’ Alibio (21-18-5) in Sydney this evening as he looks to take the first step back towards those big fights with the country’s top names.
Whilst Alibio’s record isn’t one to strike fear into the hearts of his opponents, the Filipino is coming off a five-fight win streak that stretches back to mid-2014 and includes a KO win, in Sydney, over Australian Nathan Wright (6-1-0) for the IBO Asia Pacific Title. One thing for sure is that Alibio won’t be coming to make the numbers, knowing another unexpected scalp on Australian shores would give him plenty of options moving forwards.
MacKenzie, under the guidance of new manager, Matt Rose, will undoubtedly be looking to shake of the ring-rust and look impressive tonight. Halting the Filipino’s win streak with a solid win would put him back into contention for the big fights he so desperately yearns and with the Australian Lightweight division boasting some exceptional talent, a high-profile domestic dust-up would be an exciting proposition. Fellow Sydney-sider George Kambosos Jr is the top rated lightweight in the country and is chasing fights that will put him into World Title contention so this fight may be out of reach for now. However, fights with the likes of Qamil Balla, Josh King and Billel Dib could certainly be within reach.