‘Biggest fight of the year’ in store

Promoter Nestor Tobias (centre) with Thatho Bonokoane and Philippus Nghitumbwa. Photo: Helge Schütz

One of Namibia’s top boxing prospects, Fillipus ‘Energy’ Nghitumbwa will aim to revive his career when he takes on Thatho Bonokoane of South Africa for the vacant WBO Africa super bantamweight title at the Windhoek Country Club on Saturday night. 

The 28-year-old Nghitumbwa lost his previous fight against John Riel Casemiro of the Philippines on a unanimous points decision in May this year, but he now has a chance to get backto winning ways when he takes on Bonokoane in the main fight of the ‘Together as One’ boxing bonanza, organised by the MTC Nestor Sunshine Boxing & Fitness Academy. 

That defeat against Casemiro brought his professional record to 12 wins and two defeats and saw him relinquishing the WBO Global super bantamweight title to Casemiro, but he now has a chance to win a new title although his opponent will be a tough nut to crack. 

The 33-year-old Bonokoane is more experienced, with a pro record of 22 fights, 14 wins, 5 losses and 3 draws, and even Tobias conceded that some of his losses were a bit dubious.

“Of course there are losses on his record, but if you see those losses you will realise something was wrong with the judgement,” he said at a press conference yesterday when the two boxers came face to face for the first time. 

Bonokoane, in fact, has built up a promising boxing career, winning the WBF Africa super bantamweight title in 2017, and the South African super bantamweight title two years later. 

He subsequently lost both titles, but in 2021 won the WBF intercontinental super bantamweight title, and has successfully defended it three times since then. 

Tobias said that boxing fans would be in for a great spectacle.

“They are fighting for the vacant WBO Africa super bantamweight title and I can confidently say that it will be the biggest fight of the year. I was following Thatho when he was talking about the fight on social media, and he said he’s coming here to take everything that Energy owns,” he said.

Bonokoane was in confident mood at yesterday’s press conference. 

“It’s great to be here. I’m a boxer, this is boxing, we fight and I’m here to fight one of my toughest opponents. It’s great to be given this opportunity to fight for the WBO Africa title – I’m prepared for the fight and my hands will do the talking in the ring,” he said. 

A relaxed Nghitumbwa was also in confident mood and said he is raring to go.

“I just want to thank my personal sponsor Elly-moo Productions and our main sponsors MTC and PstBet, as well as my manager and promoter, my trainers and sparring partners.

“I’m ready for the fight, I can’t wait for Saturday and I’m ready to take this guy out. I’m ready, I can’t wait, and there’s no doubt that the title will remain at home. So buy your ticket and come to the fight,” he said. 

The undercard sees nine other fights featuring some of Namibia’s up and coming prospects, with another hot prospect, Matheus Heita, who is unbeaten after nine fights, taking on Abel Joseph (7F, 3W, 4L) in the main supporting bout. 

The rest of the card is as follows:

Sebastianus Natanael (20F, 16W, 4L) takes on Andreas Nghinaunye (10F, 3W, 4L, 2D) in a junior lightweight fight over six rounds. 

Nestor Thomas (8F, 8W) takes on Matheus Nghikevali (5F, 1W, 3L, 1D) in a bantamweight fight over six rounds. 

Alfeus ‘Mosquito’ Shaanika (9F, 9W) takes on Sakaria Amutjaa (11F, 7W, 2L, 2D) in a welterweight fight over eight rounds. 

Lieekela Nghifindaka (4F, 1W, 3L,1D) takes on Immanuel Jason (8F, 4W, 4L) in a featherweight fight over six rounds. 

Martin Mukungu (9F, 7W ,2L) takes on Magret Nepembe (5F, 3W, 2L) in a junior lightweight fight over four rounds. 

Nestor Amukoto (6F, 2W, 3L,1D) takes on Shipahu Deacor (1F, 1D) in a welterweight swinger fight over four rounds. 

Edwards Mbango (3F, 2W, 1D) takes on David Johannes (1F, 1L) in a junior lightweight fight over four rounds. 

There will also be a female fight between Lakeisha van Wyk, the Hardap light middleweight champion, who is unbeaten after four fights, and Elina Shilongo, who is unbeaten after three fights. 

The tickets cost N$200 per person, or N$20 000 for a ‘wine and dine’ table of ten. 

Tickets are available at the MTC Nestor Sunshine Boxing Academy office, or at PstBet offices, as well as at the venue.

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