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Going tough for Kenyans at Aiba Worlds

Nick Okoth became the second Kenyan pugilists to lose on unanimous point decision in the International Boxing Association (Aiba) World Championships in Hamburg, Germany.

Okoth lost to his Brazilian opponent, Wanderson de Oliveira, on points 5-0 in their lightweight bout.

Okoth, who clinched a gold medal in June during the African Confederation Championships (AFBC) in Brazzaville, Congo, was expected to do much better in Germany.

The Brazzaville event was a continental qualify for the Hamburg for male boxers.

Every pugilist who reached the semi-finals in Congo booked himself a place in the Hamburg event.

Kenya’s hope now remains with the light flyweight, Shaffi Bakari, who made his international debut in Congo and fought his way to the semi-finals.

He lost in the semis and earned himself a bronze medal. Bakari, a promising stylish orthodox boxer was scheduled to face German Omar Ibrahim last night.
In the World Championships Bakari was favoured by the draw. He got a bye that placed him in the last preliminary round before the quarter-finals.
Kenya has been represented by three boxers in Hamburg.

The third one is middleweight John Kyalo, who was in action in the opening day of the tournament on Friday. Kyalo also failed to impress all the five judges in the three rounds of action against an English opponent, Benjamin Whittaker, who beat him on unanimous 5-0 points.

When boxing in the country was at its apex and Kenya’s “Hit Squad” dominated not only in Africa but also in the Commonwealth, the bulk of boxers in the national squad had their origins either in Nairobi or Nakuru counties.

Kyalo was making his debut in the championships.

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