Exuberant Musa predicts a good show in Dakar


Exuberant Musa predicts a good show in Dakar
Team Kenya’s boxing team before flying to Dakar, Senegal for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics qualifiers. Photo by Mkalla Mwambodze.

In Summary

  • A confident Hit Squad head coach Benjamin Musa expects a bumper harvest once his boxers take to the ring for the Olympics qualifiers in Dakar, Senegal from Thursday.
  • Musa draws the confidence from the preparations he has taken his charges through; underling there is no excuse for failure.
  • The team will be captained by 2008 Beijing Olympian Nick Okoth

A confident Hit Squad head coach Benjamin Musa expects a bumper harvest once his boxers take to the ring for the Olympics qualifiers in Dakar, Senegal from Thursday.

Musa draws the confidence from the preparations he has taken his charges through; underling there is no excuse for failure.

Musa lead a delegation of 15 members to Dakar on Sunday, and is already looking forward to final touches of the competition preparations.

“It was quite a long journey to Dakar, but we are thankful to God we arrived safely. We did most of the work back at home, so we are now concentrating on competition mood because the competition is here. We will only polish a few things here and there and we are ready to go,” Musa told.

The coach expected the six boxers who were not part of the first contingent to the Senegalese capital to join the team by Monday night.

“We expect them to join us tonight so that we start off together. The reception has been great, the local organising committee is doing a good job.

“I said before, that we have prepared well. My aim is to get as many slots as possible for Olympics, and nothing less,” a firm Musa said.

Lightweight boxer Humphrey Ochieng, who is among the Hit Squad contingent in Dakar is upbeat the team will harvest massively in the nine-day competition.

“Our hope and expectations are to come back home with tickets for Olympics. The weather is very different from back home but we have prepared; if it will affect us it will be in a positive way,” said Ochieng.

Commonwealth bronze medalist Christine Ongare (flyweight) is already singling out main opponents she expects to fight.

“I’m here on assignment and I expect to be up to the task when called upon. The Moroccan boxer I faced in the African games has proven to be a challenge but I feel I’m ready for her.  The Nigerians I saw are equally good but I believe I’ve got what it takes to overcome them,” she told.

The team will be captained by 2008 Beijing Olympian Nick Okoth, with Kenya staging a 13-member side of eight men and five women.  The continental fiesta is set to conclude on February 29.

Additional reporting by Mkalla Mwambodze

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