•The boxers were selected after a fiercely contested three-day trial that concluded at Nairobi’s Charter Hall late last month.
•Musa revealed that the same team will fly the country’s flag at the forthcoming Africa Boxing Championships.
Hit Squad head coach Benjamin Musa has unveiled a star-studded 15-member team to fly the country’s flag at the premier Africa Boxing Championships in Yaounde, Cameroon.
Trimmed down from an initial 24-member provisional squad, the team leaves this afternoon for the annual continental showpiece scheduled to run between July 27 and August 6. Musa asked his charges to leverage the stage and punch as many tickets as possible to the 2024 Paris Olympics in France.
“This is among the tournaments lined up by the International Olympic Committee to create the pathways to the Paris 2024 Olympics. We all need to give it our best shot,” Musa said. He expressed confidence in their ability to storm the medal podium in Yaounde.
“I’m confident we picked the right personnel with the capacity to make the country proud,” Musa stated.
‘Hit Squad’ have been conducting their training sessions both at the Mathare Depot and the VMX Fitness Centre at the Village Market in Nairobi for the last two months.
The seasoned gaffer said he is happy the government had finally agreed to fund their trip to Cameroon.
“We went through a lot of anxiety and we were not so sure we would make the trip. I’m glad our boxers now have a chance to fight for tickets to France and we thank our sponsors for coming through in our hour of need,” Musa said.
The boxers were selected after a fiercely contested three-day trial that concluded at Nairobi’s Charter Hall late last month.
Musa revealed that the same team will fly the country’s flag at the forthcoming Africa Boxing Championships.
National boxing team captain, Boniface Mugunde tipped Kenyan pugilists to prevail over their opponents. “We have some very talented members of the squad who displayed immense potential during the national trials held last week,” Mugunde said.
“I do not doubt the nation’s capacity to thrive in the qualifiers. We are going to send more boxers to Paris compared to 2020 where we only had four,” he remarked.
Mugunde, 29, vowed to spearhead the Kenyan hunt for Olympic berths at the upcoming qualifiers. “The morale in the camp is amazing and we are getting ready for the big day. We all hope for the best.”
He will be heading to the qualifiers buoyed by the impressive form he exhibited in Uzbekistan, where he was among the three Kenyan boxers to storm the quarters after a decade.
The 2022 Africa Boxing Championships light heavyweight silver medalist, Elizabeth Andiego, expressed confidence in her ability to seal a slot in the 2024 Paris Olympics.
The seasoned pugilist, who serves as Mugunde’s deputy, said she would do her best to grace the quadrennial premier global showpiece after missing out on the plane to the 2020 Tokyo Games. “Of course, my immediate agenda is to book a berth in the forthcoming France 2024 Olympics. I’m crossing my fingers for a superb performance at the upcoming qualifiers,” Andiego said.
During the last outing in the Japanese capital, Kenya’s flag was flown by the quartet of Elly Ajowi, Nick Okoth, Christine Ongare and Elizabeth Akinyi.
Hit Squad: 1. 48kgs: Abednego Kyalo; 51kgs: David Karanja; 54kg: Shaffi Bakari; 56kg: Samuel Njau; 60kg: Ethan Maina; 63.5kg: Antony Maina; 71kg:Boniface Mugunde; 80kgs: Robert Okaka; 92kg: Peter Abuti; 92+kgs Fredrick Ramogi; Women: 48kg: Christine Ongare; 54kg: Amina Martha; 63.5kg: Teresia Wanjiru; 66kgs: Friza Anyango; 81kg: Elizabeth Andiego.