In Summary

  • In the ultimate trials May 14, Ssali eliminated Joshua Nyanzi to book a ticket for the African Championships which were scheduled to begin this weekend (May 27) in Brazzaville, Congo.
    For Ssali’s age deceit, Nyanzi—who beat Ssali in the Open final in February—remained in the camp and could replace Ssali on the Bombers squad, which worries the latter the more.

KAMPALA.
Lightweight Wasswa Ssali could miss the African Confederation Boxing Championships because of a mismatch between his documented age and his actual age.

The irony: Ssali claims he is 19 years old, close sources say he could be 23 years old, but his passport shows he was born December 12, 1999, meaning he is 17 years old and thus ineligible for the continental tournament which entertains only elite athletes aged 18 years and above, according to Aiba competition rules.

For the record, Ssali boxed for Lukanga Boxing Club as an elite at the National Open, in the National League, and the Bingwa wa Mabingwa tournament in Dar es Salaam last year. He maintained the elite status this year, a confirmation that he is not below 18.

In the ultimate trials May 14, Ssali eliminated Joshua Nyanzi to book a ticket for the African Championships which were scheduled to begin this weekend (May 27) in Brazzaville, Congo.
For Ssali’s age deceit, Nyanzi—who beat Ssali in the Open final in February—remained in the camp and could replace Ssali on the Bombers squad, which worries the latter the more.

“I beat Nyanzi in the last trials but he has refused to leave the camp, I know my passport shows I’m underage but I’m still waiting for final word from Aiba,” he said.

Oscar Binka, one of the coaches in camp, affirmed that Ssali ruined his chances by registering a wrong age in his passport.
Fred Kavuma, Uganda Boxing Federation spokesman, said “I blame the mess on Ssali’s club coach; Aiba is soon giving us the final word on this issue which shall be communicated to the public.’’

The continental tournament, which is also a qualification route to the 2017 Aiba World Championships in Hamburg, has been postponed to June 17. But still, a second chance for Ssali seems very unlikely.

National bantamweight champion Isaac Masembe and Marvin Ssali will also miss the event because their passports show they are underage.