The Vice President of the Ghana Boxing Federation (GBF), Dauda Fuseini, says the failure of Ghana’
national boxing teams – Black Bombers (male) and Black Hitters (female), to snatch any of the Paris 2024 Olympics qualifying slotsfrom the just-ended 2023 Africa Olympic boxing qualifiers in Dakar, Senegal, was partly due to inadequate preparations.
The September 9–15 eventwas a qualifying event for next summer’s Games.
Ghana was represented by 12 boxers made up of five females and seven males. They all failed in their bid to earn qualification.
Reacting to Ghana’s abysmal showing at the championship, Mr Fuseini said the team did not have adequate preparation ahead of the championship.
“The team did not train well, they lacked adequate preparation.The Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoYS) did its best but the GBF believes their best was not enough; they could have done better.”
He said the boxers had only two weeks of residential training, which he believes was woefully inadequate.
“For such an intensive competition, they should have started residential camping at least two to three months before the tournament. Boxing is a combat sport that entails a lot, so you need to get yourself well equipped and prepared for the tournament.”
“Amateur boxing has been struggling financially, and this is what we always go through. It is one of the consistent sports that returns from major international competitions with something to cheer about, but it gets little attention,” he stated.
According to him, Ghana was also a victim of poor and abysmal officiating at the championship, citing a situation where Jonathan Tetteh won his fight against Algerian opponent, Mohammed Houmri, but the decision went against him.
“The fight score sheet indicated that he (Jonathan) won but to our surprise, the verdict was given to the Algerian.”
The reason for this, he explained, was because Tetteh misbehaved during the latter stage of the bout and was deducted a point, adding that even without that point, he should have won.
Again, Mr Fuseini said Theophlius Kpakpo Allotey was completely robbed as he dropped his Ugandan opponent, Fathia Shafik Mawanda, once in round one and twice in round two, yet the verdict went against him.
“Such actions by officials at the championship against Ghana also contributed to our failure,” he stated.
“We’ill lodge a protest, although it would not change anything. I think it would be a starting point for us because this has been the norm with Team Ghana at championships. I know we will continue to push until we get justice in the ring for our boxers.”
Meanwhile, the team has since returned to Ghana and will continue preparation for another opportunity at the World Qualifier in Italy later in the year.
BY RAYMOND ACKUMEY
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