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Ochieng knocks out Selemani to win back title

Kenya's Gabriel Ochieng after knocking out Tanzanian Mbarouk Salemani in an All African UBO Super Bantamweight bout, at Charter Hall, Nairobi, on Saturday night. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Gabriel Ochieng required only two minutes to dispense off Tanzanian Mbarouk ‘Sokwe’ Selelmani  and win the All-African Universal Boxing Organisation (UBO) Super Bantamweight title.

Ochieng, commonly known as ‘Ochibo’, wasted no time in his assignment as he sent his rival to the canvas in the second minute of the game.

Ochieng first won the title in 2018 in Nairobi when he defeated Tanzanian Ramadhan Kumbele.

The 35-year-old later lost the title to Ghanaian Joseph Agbeko in a bout staged in Accra, in 2019. 

Ochieng attributed his victory to good preparation he had ahead of the match.

“I have been preparing for the fight since my last game in 2019. I was always looking forward to reclaiming it,” said Ochieng.

In an early interview, Mbarouk Selemani had high hopes of winning the match.

“I appeal to organisers to have a standby ambulance ready to take him to hospital. I am not coming to Kenya for window-shopping or a walk. I am coming for a real fight,” said Selemani.

In the end, it was the Tanzanian who required medical attention.

Other winners of the night include Joyce Awino, who defeated Susan Andeso in Super Lightweight, Salim Mustafa won against Kennedy Opiyo and Lucien Botumbe defeated Dan Oluoch in Superwelterweght.

Nicholine Achieng won against Jane Kavulani in Super featherweight, while James Mugeni emerged victorious against Joseph Akahonya in their Super flyweight bout.

The event, which was dubbed ‘Ignition Boxing’, saw boxers from East Africa take part. 

Ochieng has competed in 21 bouts, won 15, lost four and drawn two.

He has also proved capable of holding his own in a tear-up; enjoying five memorable international battles.