THE Khomas region maintained their dominance of the MTC Sunshine Cup during an action packed three-day amateur development boxing tournament in Otjiwarongo.
Inspired by the presence of unified light-welterweight world champion Julius Indongo, who holds the IBF, IBO and WBA titles, Namibia's next generation of aspiring world-beaters put on a spectacle for the appreciative audience inside the Swanevelder Community Hall from Thursday to Saturday.
“The tournament was once again a huge success. The turnout was much more than we expected. It shows people really love boxing in this country,” said Khomas Boxing Federation chairman Jason 'Taks' Naule whose region have won each edition of the annual tournament since its inception in 2014.
In second place this year are Oshana, followed by Nampol in third place. Namibia's 2016 Olympic flag bearer Jonas Junias Jonas teamed up with Harry Simon Jr to mentor the Erongo team.
However, despite their star backroom staff, Erongo finished fourth, one place above hosts Otjozondjupa.
“These boys were eager to show the hard work they put in to prepare and that there is lots of talent in Namibia that just needs to be groomed,” Naule continued.
Nampol's Sebastian Nujoma won the best senior fighter prize, while Martin Ilwenya was the best junior.
Other standout performers were Gerry du Toit, who combined power and poise to score a second round knockout over Nghiyangenu Gotlieb in the highlight of the junior final contests, and Abed Shikongo, who also won with an impressive KO over Faroku Kakokolo.
“The competition and quality was high. You can see that from the close scores in most of the fights,” said Naule, a former continental champion.
Female trainer Saima Amesho from Oshana won the best coach prize, while the best official was Trecia Shivolo from Khomas.
“We are trying to encourage females and more young people to get involved in all aspects of boxing. Not all of us can be boxers but we can fill other important positions in the industry,” Naule noted.
Other highlights included Lionel Messi making an appearance in the form of eight-year-old Mateus Kalingodi, who wore a vest with the Argentine football superstar's name handwritten with a marker on his top.
Unfortunately, while he wasn't short on skill, he lost out to a more determined Nyanyukweni Nekundi for gold.
A boxer named Mosquito, whose unusual name and languid boxing style made him a crowd favourite, came up short in the final, but showed enough craft and persistence to cause havoc in future.
Seniors – Theodor Nuuyoma (Khomas) beat Festus Petrus (Nampol) in a 49kg contest; Moses Theofelus (Erongo) lost t Erastus Jonas (Oshana) in 52kg contest; Jamba Gabriel (Nampol) lost to Mathew Sem (Khomas) in a 60kg contest; Matheus Heita (Erongo) lost to Sebastian Nujoma (Nampol) in a 64kg fight; Martin Kamalili (Erongo) lost to Jason Immanuel (Oshana) in a 64kg fight; Abel Mikaiu (Otjozondjupa) beat Mosquito Shaanika (Oshana) in a 69kg fight; Bernard Bernard (Khomas) beat Andreas Shikongo (Nampol) in a 75kg fight; Abed Shikongo (Khomas) beat Faroku Kakokolo (Nampol) in a 81kg bout; and Paavo Ben (Oshana) beat Shitana Kaleb (Erongo) in a 91kg bout.
Juniors – Nyanyukweni Nekundi beat Mateus Kalingodi (both Khomas); Martin Ilwenya (Khomas) beat Kandongo Ndeshipanda (Omusati); Shooya Nakathila lost to Paulus Abraham (both Khomas); Andreas Nghilongwa (Khomas) lost to Johannes Oswin (Erongo); David Shoombe (Khomas) lost to Erick Shtana (Erongo); Immanuel Shiloya (Khomas) lost Tjituka Tjadero (Otjozondjupa); Ngame Shivute (Khomas) lost to Gabriel Araeb (Otjozondjupa); Nangolo Frame (Khomas) beat Pius Naimbondi (Otjozondjupa); David Michael (Khomas) beat Willem William (Otjozondjupa); and Gerrie du Ploy beat Nghiyangenu Gotlieb (Omusati).
- Title: Khomas retain MTC Cup
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- Date: 6:36 PM