By Yankuba Jallow
Foday Badjie will be the star attraction when he goes out to defend his Alpha Male Boxing super-middleweight on 30th March
This is the third time Foday will be defending the belt after doing the same last year in Mali.
This year’s African boxing championship is to be staged in Banjul in which three other Gambians namely Babacarr Janneh, Yusupha Badjie and Malick Jallow in various categories with a combined four belts up for grabs.
Ibrahima Sory Barry of Guinea Conakry will face Manying Ndiaye of Senegal for the 91 kg belt, Muhammed Keita of Mali will face Abdoul Kader of Niger for the 81 kg belt, Ibrahima Soumare of Mali will face Djibril Ndiaye of Senegal for the 69 kg belt, and Pape Memedou Sow of Senegal will face Tadja Wali of Benin for the 60 kg belt.
For the under-card categories, Babacarr Janneh of the Gambia will face Djibril Ndiaye of Senegal, Ismeila Mahama of Cameroon will face Muhammed Sillah of Sierra Leone, Malick Jallow of the Gambia will face Idrissa Gueye of Senegal, Ngbiamale Bangana of the Republic of Central Africa will face Moussa Dione of Senegal and Youssouf Badjie of the Gambia will face Saliou Saybatou Ndiaye of Senegal.
The President of All Africa Boxing Board of Control and the founder of the Alpha Male Boxing Academy in the Gambia, Michael Bahsoom, in an exclusive interview with Foroyaa said this championship comes with a difference because the famous World Boxing Union belt will be introduced for the first time.
Bahsoom stated that the champisonship will for the first be staged at the Independece Stadium, Bakau where Gambians would be expected to turn to support Badjie who will be all out to defend his title. Bahsoom, revealed that the price money has been increased for the boxers.
“There is high interest in the international market for Foday Badjie and some of our boxers,” Bahsoom said.
He said the countries to contest in this championship include the Republic of Central Africa, Benin, Senegal, Mali, Guinea Conakry, Niger and the Gambia. He said there will be an international referee from the United Kingdom who will come to the Gambia shortly to train local boxing referees on boxing rules and procedure. He said the referee is part of the Referee Alliance and will be giving them certificate of participation to become professional referees.
The sponsor of Foday Badjie, Van Damme Glann from Belgium said the government should support the local boxers to attain their aim of becoming world class boxers. He said the Gambia has very good boxers and with support from the government, they will raise the flag of the country in the world of boxing. Mr. Glan said boxing is a profession than can take many youths from the street and give them a decent living. He said he is optimistic of Badjie coming out victorious in the championship on 30th March.