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World Boxing Federation Champions Of The Past: Chevelle Hallback
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FEATURE   Photo: Former World Boxing Federation (WBF) Womens World Welterweight Champion Chevelle Hallback. 

Since the World Boxing Federation was originally founded by American Larry Carrier in 1988, many of the sport’s biggest names have won a WBF title, and proudly defended the blue, red and gold belt all over the world.

In the Champions Of The Past Series we take a closer look at some of the boxers who held WBF titles in years gone by, from lesser known champions to world renowned fighters, legends of the sport and current or future Hall of Famers.


Chevelle “Fist of Steel” Hallback, born in Plant City, Florida, USA on September 3 in 1971, was what many would call a real old school fighter. In a pro career spanning seventeen years, she fought the best opposition possible and won four world championships, including the WBF World Welterweight title.

Despite being fascinated by boxing from early childhood, Hallback was twenty-four years old before she started training in the sport, inspired by seeing female boxing icon Christy Martin fight on a Mike Tyson undercard.

Prior to that she had been active in running track and playing Basketball, but two days later she went to a gym and declared her desire to fight. Less than a year after that she made her professional debut, skipping the amateurs when no one wanted to face her in the unpaid code.

In February of 1997 in Miami she stopped fellow first-timer Connie Plosser in the first round. Her second fight would not be that easy, as Hallback was matched against Holland´s Lucia Rijker (4-0), who would go on to be recognized as one of the best Pound-for-Pound female boxers in history and never lose a fight.

Rijker was an undefeated four-time Kickboxing world champion before turning to boxing, and not a fair match for Hallback who had only forty-seven seconds of competitive experience. But the American gave it her best shot, and lasted into the fifth round.

After two more first-round victories, Hallback agreed to fight Bonnie Canino (5-1) for the WIBF Intercontinental Super Featherweight title on March 6, 1998 at the Memorial Auditorium in Fort Lauderdale. While it was a big ask, it was not too big and Hallback won by TKO 7.

Following the victory over Canino it became difficult to find suitable opponents for Hallback, who only had that one bout in 1998 and only managed to get one bout, a four rounder, in 1999. It was very much a case of taking anything and everything she was offered, and so she did.

In April of 2000 she lost a majority decision to Doris Hackl (3-0) for the IFBA World Super Featherweight title. The fight was reportedly close enough that it could have gone the other way, and when all was said and done it was a good learning experience for Hallback.

She lost another majority decision to Laura Serrano (10-0-2), a fight many felt she deserved to win, and had a technical draw against Snodene Blakeney (9-8), before activity picked up drastically and she won her next fifteen outings in only eighteen months, and most of them in impressive fashion.

During that period she improved her record to 20-3-1 (9), and won the IBA World Super Featherweight title with a unanimous decision over Alicia Ashley (7-3-1), and retained said championship by out-scoring former world champion Melissa Del Valle (28-2-1).

Moving up to Light Welterweight, Hallback lost a decision to undefeated Mary Jo Sanders (8-0) in May of 2004, but she quickly rebounded two weeks later by stopping Bonnie Canino (11-3) in four rounds of a rematch.

Back at Super Featherweight she retained the IBA world title by defeating Layla McCarter (17-10-4) by wide unanimous decision, and in March of 2005 she went to Japan to add the vacant WIBA crown by besting Fujin Raika (12-1-1), also by unanimous decision.

She made one more defense of the WIBA title, beating Belinda Laracuente (22-11-2) in November of 2005, before she ventured back up in weight to take on WBA, WBC, IFBA, WIBA World Welterweight Champion, and future WBF World Champion Holly Holm (17-1-2), for the vacant IFBA World title at Light Welterweight.

On May 23, 2007 at the Tingley Coliseum in Holm´s hometown Albuquerque, Hallback lost on points, and it appeared clear that she was not yet ready for the bigger opponents. Consequently she decided to settle in at Lightweight, where she made her initial mark by out-scoring Terri Blair (9-12-2) the following July.

In February of 2008 Hallback got the opportunity to challenge for the vacant IFBA World Lightweight title against Melissa Hernandez (7-1-1). One judge saw Hallback as the winner, while one scored it for Hernandez and the third had it even, resulting in a draw.

Four months later she received a second chance at the same title, but this time the opponent was Canadian Jeanine Garside (7-0-1). It was another close call, but this time Hallback was declared the winner by split decision and awarded the IFBA World Lightweight title.

A rematch with Holly Holm (now 26-1-3) was set for March 26, 2010 in Albuquerque, again at Light Welterweight but this time with the vacant WIBA World title at stake. Accepting this fight again showed that Hallback craved challenges, and feared no opponent.

Holm also won a unanimous decision in the second meeting, but this time the fight was much closer and more competitive than the deceptively wide scorecards (98-93, 98-92, 98-92) suggested. Hallback proved in this fight that Lightweight was not necessarily her limit.

She won her next fight, a non-title bout against Victoria Cisneros (5-10-2), and then jumped back in at the deep in twice in a row, coming up short on points in spirited challenges against unified World Welterweight Champion Cecilia Braekhus (17-0) and Myriam Lamare (19-3) for the IBF World Light Welterweight title.

Following those back to back losses, Hallback decided to take some time to regroup. While she kept on training, it would be more than two years before she had another fight, stopping two-time world title-challenger Dominga Olivo in June of 2014.

That fight was in reality a tune-up bout for her challenge for the vacant World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Welterweight title on August 22, 2014 at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Florida against former foe Victoria Cisneros.

Cisneros, now 11-15-2 but an established world class contender despite the less-than-flattering record, had gone 6-1 in seven outings before losing a close fight for the WBF World Light Welterweight title to Rola El Halabi in her previous fight.

With their first fight in 2010 ending in a split decision victory for Hallback, Cisneros had been calling for a rematch ever since, and was expected to give the now forty-two year old another tough fight. But, while it was not easy, this time Hallback left no questions unanswered and won by eighth round stoppage.

So far winning the WBF World Welterweight title has been the last fight of Hallback´s career. There has been talks of her returning to the ring since, but if she never fights again she has done very well for herself and her legacy as one of the best in recent years.

With world championships at Super Featherweight, Lightweight and Welterweight, Chevelle Halback´s record stands at 30-8-2 (13).

  Part 57: Evander Holyfield
  Part 56: Peter Culshaw
  Part 55: Rolando Toyogon
  Part 54: Joaquin Velasquez
  Part 53: Steve Molitor
  Part 52: Nadya Hokmi
  Part 51: Bert Cooper
  Part 50: Alfred Kotey
  Part 49: Yosuke Nishijima
  Part 48: Wayne Rigby
  Part 47: Jesus Chong
  Part 46: Renata Szebeledi
  Part 45: Lester Ellis
  Part 44: Patrick Vungbo
  Part 43: Patrick Washington
  Part 42: Ric Siodora
  Part 41: Guy Waters
  Part 40: Natascha Ragosina
  Part 39: Nicky Cook
  Part 38: Fahprakorb Rakkiatgym
  Part 37: Felix Camacho
  Part 36: Homer Gibbins
  Part 35: Joe Bugner
  Part 34: Myriam Lamare
  Part 33: Darrin Morris
  Part 32: Suwito Lagola
  Part 31: Aaron Zarate
  Part 30: Tommy Small
  Part 29: Matthew Charleston
  Part 28: Jane Couch
  Part 27: Fahlan Sakkreerin
  Part 26: Kenny Keene
  Part 25: Yvan Mendy
  Part 24: Ronnie Magramo
  Part 23: Randall Yonker
  Part 22: Holly Holm
  Part 21: Vinnie Curto
  Part 20: Robin Reid
  Part 19: Lionel Butler
  Part 18: Mads Larsen
  Part 17: Ken Sigurani
  Part 16: Orlando Fernandez
  Part 15: Roger Turner
  Part 14: Roy Jones Jr.
  Part 13: Fitz Vanderpool
  Part 12: Steve Roberts
  Part 11: Thulani "Sugarboy" Malinga
  Part 10: Junior Witter
  Part 9: Jimmy Thunder
  Part 8: Juan Lazcano
  Part 7: Jeff Malcolm
  Part 6: Ricky Parkey
  Part 5: Carl Daniels
  Part 4: Angel Manfredy
  Part 3: Samson Dutch Boy Gym
  Part 2: Greg Haugen
  Part 1: Johnny Nelson

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