Thursday, 10 September 2009

Boxing: Hit Squad - More Misses than Hits

The week is proving to be depressing for us sports people. Another disappointing outing in our national team representing the country in the World Amateur Boxing Championships. The team had 10 boxers representing us in all the weight categories except the Super-heavyweight category.
Getting it clear is the fact that we didn't have national trials where the team is supposed to be picked from. Since the Amateur Boxing Association of Kenya was formed, I think this is the first time they did such an amateurish move, going for an international event.FIRST WRONG !
Secondly, the team ought to have attended the continental championships in July but I guess these guys were in some 'boot camp' busy training for the World Championships. They may have had ( they thought) what it takes to challenge major boxing kings such as Cuba and Russia to both individual and team titles. SECOND WRONG!
Well 2 wrongs don't make a RIGHT and we were bundled out in humiliation in the first round.
Where do we fish our sports officials from? When did we decide to hand-pick teams for representing us? How well-equipped were they before leaving the country? Do we even have the necessary technical expertise to have a local national circuit for boxers, or are we still tied to the archaic ways of pugilism from the 1980s?
Back in the day, the Kenyan team was one of the major powerhouses in the ring and this culminated in the first African boxing gold in one Robert Wangila Napunyi-in the Welterweight Division. Well, I guess we reached the zenith and decided to slumber which we have never woken up from.

Oh how I miss the Hit Squad of them days: the Dick Murungas, Philip Waruinges,Patrick 'Mont' Wawerus, Steve Mwemas, Mohamed 'Bodi' Orungis and the Napunyis of their time.

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