In a surprise turn of events, the Charles Manyuchi Sports Academy on Saturday night announced it has made a decision to turn all its boxers professional.


It is a development that is likely to affect the growth of amateur boxing in the country.The announcement came soon after their star pugilist, Brendon ‘Boika’ Denes lost in what the academy deemed “controversial circumstances” in a grudge match against Thomas Jojo of the Zimbabwe National Army at the Rangers Gardens in Westlea.

They questioned the inclusion of officials, who had not officiated in previous bouts as well as the announcer of the verdict whom they alleged, as the national team coach, carried some conflict of interest and acted in a role outside of his jurisdiction.

“Boika”, a Political Administration undergraduate who had a contingent of fellow students from Great Zimbabwe University coming to support him, was adjudged to have lost by a spilt points decision, with the judges’ score cards reading 10-10; 10-10 and 9-8 in favour of Jojo.

He leaves amateur boxing with a record of 53 wins, two loses, 13 gold medals and two trophies for best boxer at the regional Zonal Games.

So determined is CMSA that their other boxers, who include Hassan Milanzi (welterweight) and Evans Husavihwevhu, are also expected to graduate into the pro ranks at a tournament they have slated for the Great Zimbabwe University in a few months’ time.

By yesterday, the academy officials were busy sorting out their medicals for licensing with the Zimbabwe National Boxing Control Board.

It is believed the decision taken by the Manyuchi camp is also fueled by lack of support as recently, they had to foot their own expenses for board and travel for the Zone 4 Games.

“Though made at such short notice, we have seriously considered our decision and come to a conclusion that we have played our part and we really need to move on. When one makes an investment in a particular venture, the least they expect is satisfaction, not in the form of favouritism per se, but just transparency in the way things are done.

“It is not a secret that we have been robbed and this will definitely demoralize our boxer and those around him in the same manner it did their role model (Charles Manyuchi) when the same thing happened to him and he was compelled to turn to professional boxing in an identical fashion,” said spokesperson and co-director, Prosper Chibaya.

She was flanked by the former WBC silver champion, (Charles) Manyuchi.