The All African Games boxing tournament, another huge multi-sports event, has started this weekend in Maputo, Mozambique. The continent's flagbearers advanced to the quarter-finals.
Despite the start of AIBA World Championships later this month, 174 boxers from 24 countries are competing. Obviously the African strongest boxing nations such as Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritius, Kenya, Nigeria, Cameroon and Ghana are taking part in this huge event.
The light flyweight class biggest favourite African Champion and AIBA President's Cup silver medallist, Cameroons Willy Thomas Essomba taught Lesotho's Kauhelo Mothunyane, who secured a bronze medal at the zonal championships in May. The verdict of their unequal contest ended 32:8 to the 24-year-old Cameroonian star.
Essomba's main rivals such as Commonwealth Championships silver medallist, Kenyan Peter Mungai Warui, Commonwealth Games winner, Namibian veteran Japhet Uutoni and Beijing Olympian, Ugandan Ronald Serugo, also advanced to the quarter-finals.
On his opening bout, the reigning African Champion, 22-year-old Mauritian Ludovic Bactora, had a really hard battle against Nigeria's tough teenager Taiwo Agbaje. Eventually the flyweight boxer advanced to the next round beating his rival by 16:14. Following his great debut, Bactora eliminated Commonwealth Games competitor, Zambian Christopher Katanga, and secured his place in the Top 8.
Algeria's best flyweight boxer, twice African Championships bronze medallist, Samir Brahimi, travelled to Mozambique for a gold medal. He successfully passed a first test beating Angola's Vivaldo Rodriguez by 14:5 and advanced to the quarter-finals. The Angolan boxer prepared for these All African Games in Cuba and you can tell that his skills has developed well during the training camp...
Another favourite, Beijing Olympic Games bronze medallist, 33-year-old Mauritian Bruno Julie, stopped Rwanda's newcomer Salim Kwizera. Commonwealth Games bronze medallist and Botswana's team captain, Tirafalo Seoko, defeated Nigerian Samson Adegboyega by 20:15 in the bantamweight class.
Uganda's three-times National Champion, Suleiman Segawa, shocked Nigerian ringside by eliminating 19-year-old Waheed Shogbanmu by 26:10 for his opening lightweight contest. But then he was defeated by Tunisia's Ahmed Mejri by a close 13:11.
Benin's No.1 and Road to Milan member, Shafick Chitou, who had an excellent World Series of Boxing experience, also advanced to the quarter-finals after beating Zimbabwe's Foster Masiyambumbi by 15:6. He will fight against African Championships silver medallist, Mmoloki Nogeng of Botswana, for a medal.
Commonwealth Games bronze medallist and African Champion, Mauritian Richarno Colin, is still unbeaten this year. Therefore he is the light welterweight class' top favourite in Maputo. The 24-year-old boxer easily defeated Mozambique's Augusto Mathule who was training with his teammates in Cuba before the Games.
In the middleweight class, Beijing Olympian, Namibian Desmond Mujandjae Kasuto, won against Youth Olympian, Benny Muziyo of Zambia, by 11:7 while African Champion, 19-year-old Mauritian Kennedy St. Pierre, knocked out Ethiopia's Daniel Tadele very quickly in the first round. Both winners are fighting for the very first time in the 75kg division at the international level after changing from the welterweight.
Giraldo Cardin Tournament quarter-finalist and Mozambique's heavyweight power, Isaac Dimande, defeated Angola's newcomer Tumba Silva by 23:7 and will face Ghana's WSB boxer Maxwell Amponsah for a medal.
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