Follow

Boxer Bakari vows to make it to Tokyo through Paris route

By Barry Silah
Tuesday, September 29th, 2020
Kenya Police pugilist Shaffi Bakari.
In summary

Barry Silah @obel_barry

Kenya Police pugilist Shaffi Bakari has vowed to earn a ticket to the Tokyo Olympics through the Paris qualifiers next year in May.

The light flyweight boxer says he is motivated by the desire to represent his country in the global sporting bonanza and has been on a full workout programme with his coaches over the past couple of weeks. 

He failed to get a direct ticket in Senegal last year during the continental qualifiers and he is now raring to go. 

The Boxing Federation of Kenya has thus organised training sessions in a bid to get other boxers to qualify for the Olympics.

“I am grateful to get back thanks to BFK. It is my belief that with all the training I am getting, especially in power and movement, I will be great in Paris.

This is a warning to my opponent, because I am hungry for that ticket,” he told People Sport during a recent interview.

The 27-year-old amateur has a career eight bouts under his belt with four wins and four losses.

The Coast born boxer has set his sights on emulating his mentor Nick Okoth who alongside Christine Ongare are the only two who have qualified for the Tokyo showpiece next year. 

“I want to qualify and it is a good thing Commander (Nick Okoth) has been pushing me and at the same time taunting me which basically encourages me.

He is someone I look up to and I really follow his career and usually we go hand in hand.

At the moment the coaches are working on our stamina and speed so this is good practice,” added Bakari.

Meanwhile, Hit Squad head coach Musa Benjamin has hinted at having six boxers for national duty in the forthcoming Olympics if all goes according to plan. He is convinced that with a bigger number there a bigger chance of titles. 

“Morale in camp is high despite the challenges we have had before. We want to keep our boxers,  especially those going for the qualifiers in Paris, in the best shape.

If we can afford to raise six boxers then our mission in Tokyo will be made easier and we can afford medals,”he said.