Accra Mayor, Mohammed Adjei Sowah, has given the October 21 ‘’make or break’’ boxing bout between undefeated Bukom Banku and his challenger Bastie Samir a major boost, promising the winner ¢5,000.
He made the surprise announcement when the two boxers paid him a courtesy call at the Accra Metropolitan Assembly Tuesday.
“I have heard Bukom Banku throw a winner-takes-all challenge on the purses so I have decided to create my own platform by providing that amount for the winner to take home,” he said.
The Accra Mayor also pledged to use his office to promote the fight so that a massive ringside attendance can be recorded.
“We all have to add to the effort to ensure that this fight is successful. Not just this fight but the ripple effect on future promotions. This is because boxing and for that matter sport is a great employment avenue and can give our development a great boost.”
The Promoter, Alex Ntiamoah of Box Office Sports Promotions who is putting the bout together, the trainers and boxers took turns to address the news conference.
One of the most striking moments was when Wadada, Banku’s trainer admitted enormous respect for Coach Ofori Asare, Samir’s trainer.
“I have a great deal of respect for Coach Asare. He is my senior and I have a lot to learn from him. He has trained both boxers before and I have a lot to learn from him as a legend but October 21 will be my night,” he said.
Coach Asare in return doffed his cap for his opposite and vowed to ensure a good fight. “I know both boxers because I have trained them before. They are both very strong and it will be a good fight,” he said.
Adjei Sowah commended the boxers, the trainers and the promoter for coming together to make the fight happen. “Everyone has played a unique role in arriving at this point and it will give us a big day.
Bukom Banku’s record of 29 wins with 22 of them coming by knockout has built a good image in the ring with annexing a major world title, the only element missing in his success story so far.
The Ghanaian boxer has had his fair share of reigning champions refusing to give him a shot to challenge for the title – one of them being Nathan Cleverly. At light heavyweight, Banku annexed the Africa and the WBO Africa titles. He has also annexed the WBO Africa Cruiserweight title as well.
Samir a 2008 Olympian, Captained Ghana’s Amateur Boxing team the Black Bombers to many tournaments including the African Championships and the AIBA World Championships. Bastie Samir is undefeated in 16 fights.