KAMPALA-  Super heavyweight David ‘The Dragon’ Ayiti has stormed the semi-finals of the AFBC African Confederation Boxing Championship after beating DR Congo’s Carlos Kabeya Kalonji in the quarterfinals at the Gymnase Nicole Oba hall in Brazzaville, Congo.

The unanimous decision victory makes Ayiti the first Ugandan to enter the medal bracket. He has qualified for the much coveted World Boxing Championships in Hamburg, Germany come August.

Meanwhile, three of his teammates are just a win away from the semi-final glory but face a mountainous task in today’s other quarterfinals against more experienced fighters.

Bombers captain Musa ‘Chicago’ Shadir (light welter) was marvellous against Zambia’s Charles Lumbwe Bwalya on Wednesday but he needs to do even more against Jonas Junius of Namibia. Junius made world headlines when he won gold at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games when he was only 20 years old.

He won gold at the 2016 Africa Olympics trials in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Namibia’s flagbearer at the 2016 Rio Olympics was destined for similar greatness before he was arrested over sexual assault in Rio de Janeiro. He lost to Frances’s Hassan Amzile in the first preliminaries.

Welterweight Muzamir ‘King Kong’ Kakande returns to the ring after a fantastic unanimous decision victory over DR Congo’s Tshabu Nzoba on Monday .  Kakande, boxing at his first continental event, must, however,  be at his unprecedented best against Algeria’s Younes Nemouchi. The Algerian has some vital experience having boxed for Algerian Desert Hawks at the Aiba World Series of Boxing since 2015.

Bantamweight Geoffrey Kaketo won a split decision against Thibault Justin Grassa of Central African Republic on Wednesday.

He faces Benin’s Martin Kouassi Klaklevi, who was a quarterfinalist at the 2016 Africa Olympics trials in Yaoundé, Cameroon.

Five of the nine Bombers—Yusuf Babu (middle weight), Reagan Ssimbwa (light heavy), Shafic Kiwanuka (heavy weight) Juma Miiro (fly weight) and Joshua Kizza (light fly)—have been eliminated from the tournament that climaxes on Sunday .  They have missed the coveted World Championships.

assemugabi@ug.natiomedia.com