By Taromane Martin
THREE of the country’s local boxers, Lemmuel Silisia, Joshua Ooku and Henry Kia have shined in Suva, Fiji over the weekend.
Hatanga Boxing club’s Lemmuel Silisia and Covenant’s Joshua Ooku both scored first round technical knockouts in their fights while national lightweight champion celebrated his 27th birthday with a win over experienced
The trio is part of a first ever two weeks inter-club exchange program organized between Team Brave of Fiji and Covenant Boxing Club of Solomon Islands.
HABA interim Vice President and Covenant Club founder Mr Calvin Ziru told SunSPORTS the boxers are the first to trial the inter club exchange program between Solomon Islands and Fiji boxing clubs, under the auspices of the Honiara Amateur Boxing Association and the Central Amateur Boxing Association in Fiji.
He congratulated the trio for the positive results and thanked their sponsors, families and friends for their support.
“Lemuel Silisia winner by first round TKO after referee stops contest. I first met Lemuel in April 2018,” the Vice President said.
“The boys we were training all knew of him and his ambition to fight as a career. Since then he has spent numerous nights at my home with the rest of the Covenant Boxing Club fighters on pre-tournament camp nights.
“It was his love for Christ and his desire to learn that stood out so strongly for me.
“This was a kid who would do everything you asked him to. You knew he wanted to succeed.
“Back home Lemuel had suffered a few defeats and was a questionable inclusion on this trip.
“But we knew that with the right coach, he would better respond to new technical skills coaching than others.
“And we were right. It’s a good feeling to be right. We remain humble in victory. To God be all glory,” Mr Ziru said on Silisia.
“Joshua Ooku wins by first round TKO. Referee stopped contest. What a trip it’s been for young OJ, as his closest friends call him.
“With only three fights under his name, this tournament was surely going to be a challenge. But he excelled in training, in camp and in the ring.
“At the airport he was the last one to arrive. He had gone to school to tell them he was leaving for a week and then to the Central Market to ask his mum to come to the airport. I met her for the first time.
“Although a quite and simple woman, I had come to learn of her and her husband’s support for their son. Kata told me she cried as the plane flew out of Henderson airport. I reminded Joshua of this before his fight.
“So why did he come? Character Courage Christ. And that is what he has. Joshua congratulations kid. To God be the Glory.
“For Kia to be honest it wasn’t easy fight. I’ve seen Kia fight a few fights already. I have been in the corner for a couple of them. And for many of them fights, it’s a walk in the Park.
“He came to Fiji to learn a few things from technical coach Osea Nanovu, one of the best in the country, but this last week has been pure gains for him.
“He fought an experienced southpaw fighter with 16 years behind him, who has fought at professional level and wasn’t afraid of Henry at all.
“But after their battle, and the pure determination of the man, Kia came out victorious, and set the platform for his other two brothers,” Ziru said.
The two-week program saw the boxers undergoing training with Team Brave, under coach Osea Nanovu from 12 to 16 November, and then fight in the Fiji Revivial Boxing Tournament held at the Suva fitness and boxing gym on Saturday.