Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Boxing tournament with international flavour slated for October

A host of Botswana’s former elite amateur boxers will trade blows amongst themselves as well as against some international opponents in a professional boxing tournament billed for October 5 this year.

The tournament, which is expected to boast a total of at least 6 bouts and 36 rounds in all, will be hosted at Cresta Lodge in Gaborone. According to the tournament promoter, Bond Ngubula of Bond Promotions, the tournament’s objective is to promote professional boxing locally and create opportunities for talented local fighters. Speaking in an interview, Ngubula said the tournament, which will be a debut one for a host of Botswana’s former amateur boxers will be just one of many to come as he seeks to promote professional boxing in the country.

Among the bouts expected to be of much interest in the tournament will be a 6 rounds matchup between local boy Moabi Mothiba and Zimbabwe’s Nicola Mutonhora. The bout is one of the only two bouts that will be featuring foreign fighters, with the other being between Botswana’s Gomotsang Gaasite and another Zimbabwean, Last Magare.

The remaining four bouts in the tournament will be an all Botswana affair with former Botswana boxing national team captain, Mmoloki Nogeng, facing off against Tebogo Kagiso, Tefo Letshikgwane versus Boitumelo Taolo, Kgomotso Bok versus Onkabetse Mookodi while the last bout will feature Kebonyethebe Ramaboana against Thato Monabana.

“We expect this to be a professionally run tournament and to ensure it becomes as such, we have called upon World Boxing Organization (WBO) Vice President Andrew Smale, who has officiated in world title fights, to be our tournament supervisor. With regards to the boxers, I am pleased to say that as it stands at the moment, in line with the requisites of professional boxing, all our boxers have been tested and have passed the medicals and are now ready to fight,” Ngubula said.

The Bond Promotions founder said, with most of the local fighters billed to take part in the tournament having been the elite in the local amateur setup, he expects very interesting bouts come tournament day.

Meanwhile, Ngubula said he expects many of the country’s current elite amateurs to flock into professional boxing once the setup gains a footing. He said while it is a dream for every boxer to represent his/her country at one point in his/her career, they also need to earn a living.

“What we are providing is an avenue through which once boxers decide to quit amateur boxing, they can join the professional ranks and make a living out of their talent. It is no secret that when some of our boxers quit, all they can show for their talents are just medals and nothing more. Some of them even join the unemployment ranks when they quit despite having been national idols in their heydays,” he explained.

He said it is heartbreaking that while the locals are very talented, something which they have shown both in the region and sometimes in the continent, some of the boxers they competed or even beat are now making big money in the professional ranks. “Going forward, our dream is to see Botswana having its own internal local titles. From there, we will push to have our boxers fight for Continental titles and ultimately the international titles,” Ngubula said.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper