After last Saturday’s victory over Jose Louis ‘La Boa’ Rodrigues, Sharif ‘The Lion’ Bogere was asked if he is feeling like his old self now that he has returned to the ring.
“You watched the fight, right?” Bogere answered. (Ed. You can as well translate it as; ‘Oh yes, I do’.)
Picking up right where he let off last September, Bogere overwhelmed Rodrigues with an early blitz enroute to a unanimous decision in a 10 round lightweight tune up bout at the Sam’s Town Hotel and Gambling Hall in Las Vegas.
After that right leg Achilles‘ tendon injury in 2015 got treated, and recurred at the end of 2016, Bogere looks like he’s finally back to his explosive self, forthwith creating panic and fear with in fight division.
Bogere’s final tally in last weekend’s fight was modest - reading 100-90 on all three judges’ cards - but that was just half the story as he was mighty impressive against the tough and experienced Mexican, in a variety of ways.
Bogere proved that, for a little guy at 5 feet 6 inches and 134 pounds, he boxes with surprising toughness against his opponent, who had a better reach of 5 feet 7 inches and 135 pounds. Also to note, is that, Rodrigues has been very active - this was his fifth fight of the season.
Bogere also showed an impressive ability to keep his legs churning, had great movement in the ring as he upped his dominance round by round. “My balance was great, I maintained foot distance and was also boxing smart. My fight plan was to deal with each round as it came and that worked out pretty well,” said Bogere.
Bogere’s trainer Thell Torrence said in an interview with SCORE that he sees a lot of potential in his boxer. “I think he is back. He is almost at the potential where he should be,” said Torrence.
“Towards the end of the fight, the other fighter head-butted Bogere, so he still has stitches in his face for around 10-12 days before we start training again for the next fight which I think will happen in January.” Torrence also piles lots of praise on Bogere for having such a tough personality that saw him get back on his heels after a career-ending injury. “He is such a tough kid. The injury he got was career-threatening and if it had been any other person, it could have ended their career. We were all worried about it but he managed to get back on his heels and now he looks as good as ready. One more trial fight, and he will be good to go for a title,” said Torrence.
Bogere, who started professional boxing at the age of 19 years, says that he has progressed enormously since he moved to the USA.
“When I look at myself back then, there is a lot of progress. I am a veteran in the ring now. I am very confident, I take everything more serious and my boxing has changed tremendously,” said Bogere.
“Last year, I was signed by Mayweather Promotions and that’s also a huge step in the progress of my career.”
Bogere boast of a rich medallion collection. The former Ugandan Bomber is a one-time World Boxing Organization (WBO) - North American Boxing Organisation (NABO) Lightweight champion, World Boxing Association (WBA) World Lightweight title contender and was named 2010 Outstanding Young Male Boxer of the Year.
Prior to his injury, Bogere was ranked fifth in the lightweight division by Ring Magazine, third by International Boxing Federation (IBF)and sixth by World Boxing Council (WBC) but the 29-year-old has since fallen down the pecking order all major sanctioning bodies ratings due to inactivity from the recent forgettable one-year sabbatical.
“Getting back to the rankings tops the list of my dreams,” said Bogere. “My biggest dream though, is to get a title in this weight before I move up to another weight. That would mean the world to me.”
And for a man that has made 13 Mexicans grovel on that growing list of his casualties that reads 30 to-date, nothing seems impossible for the ‘Hungry Lion’ – for now.
BOGERE AT A GLANCE
Nickname(s): The Lion, Lion Warrior
Height: 5 ft 6 ½ in (169 cm)
Reach: 68 in (173 cm)
Residence: Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Born: October 8, 1988 (age 29)
Debut fight: April 5, 2008
Total fights: 32
Wins by KO: 20
No contests: 1
Sharif Bogere’s fierce fighting style, quick speed, and extravagant presence in the ring has rightfully earned him nicknames like ‘The Lion’ and ‘The Lion Warrior’. He strives to give his fans an unforgettable show; going as far as parading to the ring draped in the head and skin of a lion. He proudly wears it as representation of his native country of Uganda and its people, who view him as a national hero.