The final trials for slots in the national boxing team that will feature at the 2020 Olympic qualifiers in Senegal have been brought forward to Sunday, January 5, at the MTN Arena in Lugogo.
This was announced by the Uganda Boxing Federation president Moses Muhangi on Thursday as the New Year has started early for the 26 boxers vying for the 13 slots available for Uganda in the Africa Olympic qualifiers set for Dakar, Senegal next month.
Following a directive to all member federations from the Africa Olympics boxing task force to submit their final lists of boxers to represent their countries by January, 6, the Uganda Boxing Federation has changed the dates for the final qualifiers from January 12 to 5 at the MTN Arena in Lugogo as the federation boss Muhangi announced.
“We had expected to have this completion on January 12 but unfortunately we got information requiring us to register the boxers by January, 6. This has forced us to change the date,” Muhangi said.
Despite the abrupt change, the boxers are not any less enthusiastic.
Having missed out on a chance to represent his country at the all Africa games in Morocco last year due to lack of a passport, Zana Boxing club’s Joshua Male, nicknamed ‘The punisher’ vowed to dispose of Edris Mukiibi on Sunday now that he has got his passport.
“Am looking at Dakar moment, I am ready to fight my opponent on Sunday. Nothing I can promise my opponent. I need to see myself in Tokyo Japan,” Male said.
Among the key bouts in the women’s category will be 20 year old Doreen Nassali who faces local ring queen Hellen Beleke who won bronze in Morocco for the middle weight slot, and teenager
Catherine Nanziri who battles Teddy Nakimuli in the fly weight.
The girls say they are all ready to rumble. “It was not easy to reach at finals, I believe and I promise I enter the ring with mission on being on national team,” said Nassali.
“I have been training for whatever fight that comes across. I have won fights to this level and am ready to fight for win at whatever cost,” Nanziri said.
In other fights on the day, Solomon Geko will take on Micheal Komaketch in the super heavy weight, fans darling David Semuju has Yusuf Nkobeza to deal with in the light weight category while Stanley Mugerwa will have to negotiate bombers Captain Shadir Musa the welterweight among other fights.
Eight Male and five female boxers will be selected to carry Uganda’s flag in Senegal.
As a way of collecting funds to support the team, the first time there will be an entrance fee of 5,000 and 10,000 Uganda shillings for those interested in watching the bouts.