‘It’s not hitting a girl when you have boxing gloves on,’ says Mary Spencer

WINDSOR, ONT.—It’s the fifth round of a full-intensity spar and boxer Mary Spencer has begun bullying her opponent.

She lowers her head and ploughs forward, swinging from the hips. As she backs away, her hands drift down and she’s caught sharply in the nose. Spencer’s head snaps back and she reels for a second.

“Feels good,” Spencer growls, and begins burrowing forward again.

Her opposite — former Canadian champion Jason Hurst — tries to laugh. He can’t. He’s breathing too hard.


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