London, Great Britain, 29 July 2012 – Several AIBA Road to London boxers took to the ring at the ExCeL during the first day of competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games and there were some scintillating performances that showcased once again why this initiative is so highly regarded.
Tajikistan’s 21-year-old AIBA Asian Olympic Qualifying Event bronze medallist Sobirdzhon Nazarov and Namibia’s Beijing Olympian Mujandjae Kasuto put on anexcellent battle in their Middleweight (75kg) contest. Both boxers were in great condition it showed as they each threw lots of punches throughout their bout. It was the African boxer who with his previous Olympic experience defeated the strong Central Asian boxer 11:8.
Syria’s Asian Games bronze medallist Wessam Slamana was also in Cardiff for the three week training camp but unfortuinatly came up against the fleet-footed WSB season one Individual Championships winner Kanat Abutalipov. The final score read 15:7 to the Kazak but Slamana declared after his defeat, “the AIBA Road to London program has made me a much better fighter, I am proud of my performance at these Olympic Games”.
26-year-old Namibian Jonas Nghilandemwenyo Matheus defied expectations by taking a quota place for London at the AIBA African Olympic Qualifying Event and put Italy’s Jahyn Vittorio Parrinello, who has been in tremendous form of late, under a lot of pressure in their encounter. Parrinello was the winner but he will remember Matheus for years to come.
Gabon’s 32-year-old Braexir Romeo Lemboumba qualified for the Olympic Games for the very first time and as a result took part in AIBA Road to London Program. He came up against Dominican Republic’s Independence Cup winner William Encarnacion Alcantara at the ExCeL and was eager to impress and although his fitness could not be faulted, Lemboumba’s lack of experience in the ring against top class opponents told as he lost his contest.
Ghana’s 18-year-old AIBA African Olympic Qualifying Event silver medallist Isaac Zion Kojo Dogboe looked on course for victory against Japan’s Beijing Olympian Satoshi Shimizu, however let a two point advantage slip in the final round. He will have learnt a lot from that fight but was said to be already looking forward to joining up once again with the AIBA Road to Dream program.
Turkmenistan’s rising star, 19-year-old Youth Olympic Games bronze medallist Nursahat Pazziyev qualified to the Games after a hard-fought silver medal at the AIBA Asian Olympic Qualifying Event and was another who impressed the coaches during the gruelling training camp in the Welsh capital. The Central Asian teenager fought valiantly against Turkey’s classy European Championships silver medallist Adem Kilicci but was eventually defeated 14:7.
Serbian veteran Aleksandar Drenovak, who was a quarter-finalist at the AIBA World Boxing Championships Baku 2011, also joined up with the boxers at the AIBA Road to London in Cardiff and will have been delighted with his 13:12 triumph over Ecuador’s 19-year-old Marlo Javier Delgado Suarez. Drenovak overturned a first round deficit in the Middleweight (75kg) contest to notch up another win for the AIBA Road to London program members.
Tomorrow, several more athletes from the initiative will be taking to the ring looking to progress.