Brazzaville, Congo, is set to build on the memorable All-African Games it hosted in 2015 as the city welcomes a record 145 men and 41 women boxers for the 2017 AFBC African Confederation Championships from 18-25 June. The Gymnase Nicole Oba will be the venue for the continental tournament that this year doubles as a direct qualification route for the men to the 2017 AIBA World Championships, with quota places awarded to the four top athletes in each of the ten weight categories. The championships also provide the focal point for AIBA’s ground-breaking Year of Africa legacy project.
Having delivered their first All-Africa boxing gold medal two years ago, Congo will be looking to make history again as the sport continues to reach new audiences and a new generation of potential champions emerges in the country. The hosts will be hoping for another strong showing from Cedric Massala, All-Africa Games Welterweight (69kg) bronze medallist two years ago, and joining them among the 19 teams pressing for a precious podium finish and place in Hamburg will be typically strong squads from Morocco, Algeria, Egypt and Nigeria alongside emerging boxing nations Botswana, Seychelles and Togo.
All eyes will also be on Cameroon 19-year-old Dieudonne Wilfried Seyi Ntsengue, Middleweight (75kg) winner at the All-Africa competition two years ago, with Egypt’s Hossam Hussein Bakr Abdin, bronze medallist at the 2015 AIBA World Championships in Doha, also among the favourites. As more young women continue to take up the sport in Africa, the level of competition for the AFBC Womens Championships will also raise once more, with the likes of Algeria, DR Congo, Kenya, Morocco and Nigeria sending strong teams.