After a good start where he knocked out Africa’s middleweight champion Mohammed Rabii of Morocco, Kenya’s deputy captain Boniface Mogunde has exited Africa Olympic Qualifiers.
Mogunde was beaten by Lesotho boxer Michael Pakela in the light middleweight clash at Dakar Arena Hall in Dakar, Senegal on Sunday.
The exit of Mogunde came as a shocker to the Kenyan contingent in the West African capital who were hoping Mogunde could reach the medal bracket.
It was a sad day for the Kenyan boxers in the office that saw the exit of three more boxers as the continental showpiece takes shape.
Former Commonwealth Games flyweight bronze medallist Christine Ongare and national featherweight champion Amina Martha were show the door.
Ongare who is the second most experienced female boxer in the squad after Team captain and Africa Zone Three heavyweight gold medallist Elizabeth Andiego was beaten by Hafsi Wafa of Tunisia on unanimous points’ decision in the round of 32 in the flyweight division.
On her part, Martha lost her match in a similar fashion (Unanimous points’ decision) to Haghighat -Joo Sara of Sierra Leone.
Also to lose on unanimous points’ decision was light welterweight Ethan Maina who was beaten by Hebe Monaheng of Lesotho.
However, former national coach George Gichuki who also nurtured many Kenya Prisons boxers said all is not lost for the Kenyan squad in Senegal.
“Qualification to Olympics is a process and the fact that some of boxers marched to the second round of the event is a plus to the technical bench following retirement of top boxers in Nick ‘Commander’ Okoth and superheavyweight Elly Ajowi," Gichuki said.
He said it’s a step at a time in the fight for top honours in all sporting disciplines.
Flyweight (51kg) - Christine Ongare lost to Hafsi Wafa of Tunisia.
Bantamweight (54kg) - Amina Martha lost on unanimous points’ decision to Haghighat -Joo Sara of Sierra Leone.
Light welterweight (63.5kg) - Ethan Maina beaten by Hebe Monaheng of Lesotho on points.
Light middleweight (71kg) – Boniface Mogunde beaten by Michael Pakela of Lesotho.