Optimism for SA boxers ahead of Glasgow 2014

15 May 2014

Boxing South Africa president Andile Mofu is quietly confident ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland, after South African boxers picked up 11 medals at the African Zone Four Championships in Tshwane in April.

The South African team participated in over 15 divisions and came out tops against the seven other countries competing, winning four gold, three silver and four bronze medals.

Three boxers who featured at the 2012 Olympic Games in London were in action, but of the trio only Siphiwe Lusizi took gold as he beat Lunsile Dyamdeu with a first-round knock-out in the 75kg division.

Best boxer

Paul Schafer was named the best boxer of the tournament, while Sibusiso Bandla (49kg) and Tulani Mbenge (69kg) also struck gold.

Mofu raved about Schafer, who also represented Team South Africa at the 2011 All Africa Games in Mozambique.

‘An amazing performance’

“In my mind, Paul produced an amazing performance,” Mofu told Road to Rio 2016. “He went on to defend his title against some tough opponents and came out tops. He will surprise many people at the Commonwealth Games.”

Mofu also predicted a bright future for Schafer, adding: “If one looks at boxers like him, he is sure to grow within the ranks, provided he stays with open boxing [the former Amateur code]. He put on a gallant performance to win on all three judges’ cards.”

Cautious optimism

At the last Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, South Africa failed to win a medal, but with all four of the country’s Zone Four gold medallists set to claim places in Team South Africa for the forthcoming Games in Glasgow, there will be cautious optimism of some positive returns this time out.

Next up for the South Africans will be a training camp in Europe in June and then the Africa Cup in East London in July.

The Commonwealth Games take place from 23 July to 4 August.

(Source: Road to Rio)