LOCAL Boxing promoters, Deltaforce Boxing Academy have drawn up a very ambitious calendar of activities this year, which they say will help revive the sport in the country. BY HENRY MHARA
The academy’s programmes director, Clyde Musona said they have set a boxing itinerary, which will see them staging five tournaments, three of them international.
The highlight on the list is the Zimbabwe Independence Boxing Bonanza tournament set for April 18 at the Harare International Conference Centre.
Other tournaments on the schedule are the Petros Masiyambumbi Memorial trophy on June 24, where 24 local amateurs from the country’s 10 provinces will participate, the National Defence Forces Day Boxing Bonanza on August 15, where three titles will be on the line with 8 countries competing.
Another amateur event, the Pan African Youth Empowerment Through Sport Tourism, is slated for September 23, with 28 amateur boxers from eight participating countries tussling it out.
The World Diabetes Day Boxing tournament on November 14 will conclude the calendar with boxers from Zimbabwe, Malawi, Botswana, Tanzania and Zambia fighting for honours in 12 international bouts and three titles on the line.
It is the Independence Boxing Bonanza that would draw most attention, with 12 international fights lined up on the night with the main event between England based Zimbabwean star Tamuka ‘The Beast” Muchapondwa and Makangila Benoit of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The two will face off for the WBO and IBF welterweight title.
It would be Muchapondwa’s homecoming show for the Reading-based boxing sensation.
“We have 12 international bouts on the night , six of which are Africa title fights. Its would be a big night for Zimbabwe and African boxing frratenity. We expect boxers from 11 countries including Namibia, Malawi, Botswana, Uganda, DRC, South Africa, Tanzania, Ghana and Kenya. The main fight would be a 12-round WBO and IBF welterweight title fight between Muchapondwa and Makangila from DRC. They are both undefeated going into the fight, so one of them will likely to get his first defeat on the day, which makes the fight interesting,” Musonda, said.
“Mucha has been making waves in England and we will bring him back home so that he can fight in front of his local supporters.”
The highly-rated 24-year old Muchapondwa is 16-0, while Benoit is also unbeaten after 13 fights, with 12 wins (6KO) and a draw.
Not many local boxing fans may have heard much of Muchapondwa, but the fighter already looks set to become the country’s next boxing star after Charles Manyuchi, holder of the World Boxing Council Welterweight silver title.
Another fight to look forward on the night is that of former world champions, Paulus “The Hitman” Moses of Namibia and Ghanaian Benjamin Lamtey.
Malawi’s female boxing star, Anisha Bashir will look to enhance her ever growing reputation when she fights Joice Awino of Kenya for the WBO and ABU Africa title.
The Zimbabwe National Boxing Board of Control was expected to meet with the Deltaforce Boxing Academy at the weekend, to sanction the first tournament