LAGOS – Boxing used to be the most popular sport in Nigeria in the 1980s but completely disappeared from view until the beginning of the 2000s.
At the Africa Youth Games (AYG) in Algeria during the year under review, the boxers won six medals for the country.
However, at the Commonwealth Games in Australia, a team made up of five male and four female boxers only managed to win two bronze medals – Yetunde Odunuga in the 60kg category and Millicent Agboegbulem in the 75kg category.
Sports loving Nigerians, especially boxing followers had predicted two gold medals but we got two bronze medals.
What this shows is that things can be done better to prepare our athletes for these games.
These results also highlight that Nigeria is gradually losing its prominence in short sprints.
Meanwhile at the local level, the monthly GOtv Boxing Night continues to bring joy and happiness to the lovers of the game with regular boxing bouts, which has helped, in discovering some hidden talents.
Former Africa champion, and ex-Olympian, Jeremiah Okorodudu heaped the blame of the ‘not-too-impressive’ outing of the sport to the attitude of our administrators at the Sports Ministry and called for better organization in terms of appointment of the right administrators in running the affairs of the sport in the country.
“The problem facing our boxers will continue until we do the right thing which is putting the right pegs in the right holes.
“The boxers are there for us to develop but if the people at the helms of affairs are not interested in the sport, there is little or nothing we can do for its development,” Okorodudu said.