As the 18th National Sports Festival draws to a close, coach Sunny Nwamuda has blamed the poor rating of boxing by stake-holders on very bad officiating by the judges.
According to him the, "judges never judged fights well, there were lots of fights where an acclaimed winner was declared loser giving the impression the technical officials ran personal fulfilling agenda and I felt it was not good for the sport.
We saw boxers demoralised and frustrated before getting into the ring because there was that belief that no matter how hard you tried, judges would give it to a pre-determined opponent. I did not know if they did it for money but my impression is that boxing was critically damaged.
Nwamuda, who fought as middleweight in the professional ranks in his days, said "it's not as if the coaches did not do their jobs well, we saw willing boxers in the ring , though in some cases there was poor anticipation by boxers, wrestling and slapping in some fights but the snag was very poor officiating.
If we had good officiating, I think there would be good reason to be happy. I will say may be, the boxing federation and the National Sports Commission did not relay a clear-cut message to the officials about the agenda of the festival.
Nwamuda however, said he identified good fighters during the event "I saw at least two potentials among the pack that fought in the festival. One is super heavyweight Osamade who represented Abia and one other from Delta whom I can't recall his name. They will need further grooming because both are good."