Molepolole — Lethabo Modukanele (48-51kg) of Tsholofelo Boxing Club and Tefo Maitewa (56kg) of Molepolole Boxing Club have been named best boxers in the country in their respective weight categories after clinching the titles in hotly contested bouts during the Botswana Boxing Association (BoBA) national championship finals held in Molepolole over the weekend.
Modukanele and her opponent Mishingo Mabende staged a very exciting bout to watch.
Modukanele won the bout with a 4-1 decision against Mabende. Modukanele proved that she is an experienced boxer who has competed abroad and is part of the women national team.
Although she dominated her opponent, surprisingly, it was not all smooth sailing because Mabende gave a very good fight. She fought like a professional and her level of fitness was top notch. And she came to the party and entertained supporters who filled half of Molepolole Institute of Health Sciences indoor arena.
Perhaps the exciting bout can be attributed to the coaches since there was a clash of profiles.
The two coaches, Lechedzani Luza, who is Modukanele's coach and Thebe Setlalekgosi, Mabende's coach, both have coached the national team with Luza being the current national coach.
With Modukanele having been on the national team for quite some time, obviously there is some form of understanding between her and the coach making delivery on the ring much easy since they have been working together for some time now.
Mabende's coach, Setlalekgosi comes from a professional boxing background. The DTCB club has also roped in Dusan Cakic who brings in professional boxing experience at club level as well as fitness training.
On top of that, Mabende's assistant coach, Kagiso Tlhabano is a psychologist by profession hence she is a women fly weight prospect after she played like a professional.
Modukanele and Mabende's bout was named the best bout under the women elite category of the day.
The second best bout under the men's elite category, that also kept supporters glued on the ring was between Bantam weight champion Tefo Maitewa of Molepolole Boxing Club and Moremi Treasure of DTCB where it was clear Maitewa was favourite.
Maitewa won a clear decision of 5-0 against Moremi. He went on to be named best boxer of the year.
Maitewa defeated the defending champion of the bantam weight category, George Molwantwa during the semi-finals held in Lobatse with a 4-1 decision.
For some time, Maitewa has been runner up of Molwantwa in this category and in some cases Maitewa accompanied the national team as the second best in this category.
Considering the tactical approach delivered going into the final, Maitewa is south paw (left handed boxer) while Moremi is orthodox (right handed boxer) it was obvious that Moremi was going to struggle a bit playing against a left handed Maitewa, besides Maitewa is experienced.
It is also important to note that Moremi is new in this category because he is a light weight boxer.
He had to drop to bantam weight after he failed to secure a place under his normal category at the African Games played at Morocco this year.
However, one would have expected him to show that he is still the game veteran also taking into consideration that his coaches have an upper hand as they are professionals as opposed to Maitewa's coaches.
Another interesting observation at the just ended championships is that Kabo Seitshirio of Eastern Military Garrison Boxing Club defeated Pitso Mmopiemang who was the defending champion at the semi-finals and went on to win gold against Motswakae Ronald of Sir Seretse Khama Boxing Club (SSKB) with 5-0 decision.
Meanwhile the association held an award ceremony that marked the end of the season.
Under youth girls category, Gift Modise of Orapa Boxing Club was crowned promising boxer of the year. This saw Maxwell Sechi of BMC also clinching promising boxer of the year under Youth boys.
Best referee of the year went to Gaolatlhe Rampape while Ponatshego Gaseitsiwe was crowned Best Judge of the year.
Also, Botswana Prisons Services Boxing Club was named the winning team followed by EMG at number two spot and Tsholofelo Boxing Club at third position.
Source : BOPA