By Prince Dornu-Leiku – All is set for the expected biggest fight night in Ghanaian boxing history Saturday evening at the Accra Sports Stadium when the curtain is finally drawn on the much trumpeted ‘Clash of Kings’ maiden promotion by Ghana national soccer team skipper Asamoah Gyan’s BabyJet Promotions.
A tense weigh-in session invaded by fans galore pledging varying allegiance to either Emmanuel Tagoe or George Ashie who clash in the headliner and a much anticipated showdown which has two of the finest trainers this country can boast also in the respective corners. Legend Azumah Nelson pits his technical aptitude up against Godwin Djanie Alloway, arguably Ghana’s most outstanding boxing coach, the same man who trains Joshua Clottey.
At stake is the WBA International Lightweight title for either of reigning Commonwealth Super Featherweight champion George Ashie 23-3-1, 16 KOs, or former WBO Africa and IBF Intercontinental Super Featherweight titlist Emmanuel Tagoe (18-1, 8 KOs).
Such was the rivalry between the fans at Friday’s weigh in that if all and a larger expected cast make it to the Accra Sports Stadium Saturday night, then there is no doubt the biggest crowd at a local fight show stand to go into the record books as BabyJet Promotions launch the comprehensive plan to revive Ghana boxing to produce worthy fighters capable of not only emulating, but also eclipsing the successes of Azumah, Ike Quartey, Joshua Clottey and Joseph Agbeko.
Such was the aggression of the supporters in the highly restricted Media Centre of the Accra Stadium, both boxers hustled to even get a space just enough to stand on the scale to be weighed. Ashie nicknamed the Red Tiger, revealed his ’red’ physique as he delightedly met the 135 lbs weight which was matched exactly by the confident man nicknamed Game Boy, Emmanuel Tagoe.
BabyJet Promotions founder, owner and President, Asamoah Gyan was in somber mood yet effective at work as he coyly supervised the eccentric weigh-in barely 24 hours after netting twice to aid club side Al Ain win 3-2 over Al Shabab to go top of the UAE Pro League. That had come just 48 hours after Gyan lost his mum, the late Madam Cecilia Love Amoako in a ghastly motor accident in Accra.
“I was close to my mum and was coming to celebrate her birthday today. It is a big shock as everybody knows but in life you need to experience bitterness, not always expecting happiness,” Gyan told Ghanaian journalists after arriving in the country on Friday morning to a presidential welcome at the Kotoka International Airport.
The Ghana captain added: “When I heard the news it was strange to me and a shock. But as a footballer you don’t go on to the pitch with your emotions. It’s difficult but I will concentrate on my career and I even scored two goals yesterday for my club which tells you how strong I am.”