Uganda And Her Finest Performances On The Commonwealth Game Titles: Boxers And Track Athletes During The 1970’s

Uganda And Her Finest Performances On The Commonwealth Game Titles: Boxers And Track Athletes During The 1970's


It absolutely was on the Commonwealth of Nations Video games of 1970 and 1974, that were held in the city Edinburgh in Scotland and in Christchurch in New Zealand respectively, that Uganda’s competitors have been most victorious at these quadrennial gatherings.

In 1970, Uganda’s functionality in boxing was one of the most uplifting with Uganda profitable a few gold medals (James Odwori, Mohamed Muruli, and Benson Masanda) and two silver medals (Leo Rwabwogo and Deogratias Musoke). The other medals won for Uganda were over the observe William Koskei’s silver medal in the 400 meters hurdles, and Judith Ayaa’s bronze medal within the Ladies’s 400 meters. Uganda executed Similarly properly within the Commonwealth Online games of 1970.

Bronze medal wins in boxing, within the Commonwealth Online games held in Kingston in Jamaica in 1966, by Alex Odhiambo, Mathias Ouma, and Benson Ocan were being indication that Uganda was relocating up in international novice boxing ranks. Uganda’s overall performance for the Commonwealth Games, 4 yrs earlier (1962) in Perth in Australia, witnessed Uganda gain her initial Commonwealth gold by way of heavyweight boxer George Oywello. Also remarkable on the venue have been the boxing bronze medal wins by John Sentongo and foreseeable future national army commander and Olympic Committee member Francis Nyangweso, and also the silver medal gained by long run countrywide boxing coach Kesi Odongo. To buttress Uganda’s self esteem inside the realm of boxing have been Uganda’s 1st and only Olympic medal wins, for the 1968 venue Mexico City, by boxers Leo Rwabwogo and Eridadi Mukwanga a bronze and silver medal respectively. That is definitely Despite the lofty Olympic judging of 1968 and later on 1972 which was seemingly tinged with racial bias and favoritism.

Edinburgh, Scotland 1970

For the 1970 Commonwealth of countries Video games, the teen James Odwori was Uganda’s boxing competitor in the flyweight division. The beginning was rather straightforward for Odwori, given that he wasn’t drawn Amongst the 4 outside of the whole 10 flyweights that will combat in the preliminary rounds on July 17th. Considering that the complete figures of competitors in the incredibly reduced along with the extremely higher body weight divisions were somewhat fewer, a lot of were being automatically positioned in the following round the quarter finals. The initial flyweight quarter finals bout was on July 20th. Odwori defeat Anthony Kerr of host place Scotland, on points, and earned his ticket to your semi finals. From the semi finals that associated four contenders, Odwori was again scheduled to box in the initial bout. By a vast majority points selection, Odwori impressively conquer Mickey Abrams of England, on July twenty second and was by way of on the finals! Odwori would proceed to beat Anthony Davis of Wales by points, to get Uganda’s to start with 1970 Commonwealth Online games gold medal. Odwori experienced impressively set the conventional for Uganda boxers. He boxed for the Uganda Prisons plus the countrywide groups for much more than 10 decades to come and afterwards went back to his indigenous Kenya wherever he became Kenya Prisons boxing mentor and later on Kenya national mentor.

The flyweight division included twelve contenders in the Commonwealth Online games of 1970. The same as Odwori, Uganda’s contender Leo Rwabwogo Luckily for us bypassed the preliminary spherical of July seventeenth these kinds of that he would 1st combat as 1 / 4 finalist. On July 20th Leo Rwabwogo was position within the quarter finals to battle Leon Nissen (whose equivalent twin Henry was also a boxer) of Australia. The referee stopped The competition in the 2nd round, a technological knockout in favor of Rwabwogo, making it possible for Rwabwogo to maneuver to the semi finals. On July twenty second, Rwabwogo was put in the main bantamweight semi remaining bout with opponent 18 calendar year old David Larmour of Ireland who would later turn into an Olympian and Experienced boxer. Rwabwogo received by a the greater part factors determination. For the finals, Rwabwogo would fight with potential Expert and Englishman David (Dave) Needham of Nottingham. Needham ably outpointed Rwabwogo by 4 one, allowing Rwabwogo to accept the silver medal. The gold medal had eluded Rwabwogo on the Olympic Online games in Mexico Town wherever he settled for bronze; and inside the forthcoming Olympics of 1972 that were held in Munich in Germany, Rwabwogo would once more slide in need of the massive win immediately after remaining defeated from the finals. But famed Rwabwogo stays Uganda’s only double Olympic medallists and the only real Ugandan to own captured medals at both the Olympic and Commonwealth Video games.

Uganda’s bantamweight contender Eridadi Mukwanga experienced within the Olympic Games of 1968 in Mexico metropolis cemented historical past by becoming the country’s first Olympic silver medallist. At these Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh, Rwabwogo was inside the very last bout from the bantamweight division scheduled to struggle Joe Cooke of Canada. Mukwanga was unable to Are living nearly his fame and expectations, defeated by details by Joe Cooke of Canada on July 18th. Cooke would afterward also be kicked away from medal contention, when he was defeated by Stewart Ogilvie of Scotland, following the referee stopped the bout in the primary spherical.

During the featherweight division Uganda’s Deogratias Musoke strutted his feathers. For the preliminaries, on July 18th, Musoke was pitted against unheralded G. Marisa of Tanzania. The bout went in favor of Musoke after the referee halted The competition in the next spherical. On July 21st, within the quarter finals, Musoke moved on towards the semi finals immediately after beating Eddie Pritchard of Wales by points. To the semi finals was scheduled to fulfill with Pakistan’s Abdul Samad Mir. The combat didn’t materialize mainly because Samad Mir was struggling to struggle. It grew to become an easy walkover in favor of Musoke. The consolation for Pakistan was that Mir’s bronze medal was the only 1 with the nation at this Commonwealth Games’ venue. Also, Samad Mir continues to be Just about the most well known of Pakistani boxers. Within the 1970’s he was declared “Greatest Boxer of Asia.” He joined the military and retired as being a Lieutenant Colonel. He also coached the Pakistani’s Army Boxing as well as National teams. Samad Amir handed absent in May 2020.

In the finals, Musoke would deal with Kenya’s longstanding boxing legend Philip Waruinge whose boxing accolades involve a number of medals at both the Commonwealth plus the Olympic Games. Deogratias Musoke, defeated on details inside the finals on July 24th, was awarded the featherweight boxing silver medal.

The preliminary lightweight bout on July 18th, concerning Uganda’s teenager Joseph Nsubuga and Olympian Kenneth Mwansa of Zambia, resulted within an early farewell for Nsubuga who was defeated by details.

Mohamed Muruli, considered one of Uganda’s master boxers, had as a lightweight been placed fifth Total with the Olympics of 1968 in Mexico City. This time, Muruli would symbolize Uganda as a lightweight welterweight. There were twelve opponents Within this division and Muruli was Blessed to be drawn to the quarter finals and for that reason forego fighting while in the preliminaries of July seventeenth. During the quarter finals, held on July 20th, Muruli outpointed Reginald Forde of Guyana. Forde remains one of the most popular Guyanese boxers. On September 14th 1978, Reggie Forde was as a specialist fighter knocked out in the fifth round by famed Uganda boxer Ayub Kalule, in The search for your British Empire Commonwealth title.

On July 22nd, within the semi finals, really hard hitting Muruli defeated foreseeable future Olympian Odartey Lawson of Ghana if the referee stopped the fight in the primary round. Muruli moved on to acquire the gold for Uganda just after outpointing Dave Davis of Wales on July 24th.

The welterweight division witnessed Uganda’s Olympian Andrew Kajjo reduce Hugo Chansa of Zambia by details on July seventeenth 1970. The subsequent year Chansa would flip Specialist As well as in April 1974 he would die from brain accidents soon immediately after getting knocked out by Scotland’s Don McMillan in a very middleweight bout. On June twentieth, Emma Ankudey of Ghana would mar Kajjo’s quest for your medal by beating him by factors during the quarter finals. Ankudey would ultimately gain the gold medal and in addition characterize Ghana on the Olympics of 1972 in Montreal.

Uganda’s biracial light weight middleweight boxing winner David Jackson was drawn to start combating while in the quarter finals, and not battle One of the eight competitors within the preliminaries. To be a teen Jackson was positioned fifth All round in Amongst the mild middleweight competitors for the Olympics of 1968 in Mexico City. This time in Edinburgh, Jackson didn’t go considerably, on condition that on July twentieth the referee halted the bout in the 1st round in favor of Tom Imrie of Scotland. Imrie had won the Commonwealth silver medal on the former location of Kingston in Jamaica and he stays a famed Scottish boxer. Imrie could well be the eventual gold medal winner this time in Edinburgh, and thereafter move on to Skilled fighting. His report as knowledgeable pugilist was mediocre. David Jackson would once more fight for Uganda with the forthcoming Olympics (1972) in Montreal, and become positioned 9th Over all while in the welterweight division.

The teen John Opio moved on to the quarter finals, following defeating long run Experienced boxer Billy May of Wales, by factors on July 20th in the preliminary rounds with the middleweight division. But during the quarter finals, from Samuel Kasongo of Zambia, Opio was eliminated once the referee stopped The competition in the third round. Opio would stand for Uganda with the forthcoming Olympics in Munich.

The preliminaries of The sunshine heavyweight division associated the second spherical disqualification of Commonwealth bronze medallist and a pair of time Olympian George Mathias Ouma at the fingers of Johnny Banham of England on July 18th.

Since there were only 7 contestants from the heavyweight division, and six were put from the quarter finals. It was Uganda’s Benson Masanda, Amongst the seven boxers, who hit the jackpot by instantly currently being put in the next stage the semi finals! The quarter finals occurred on July 20th. Inside the semi finals on July 22nd, Masanda defeated Canada’s Jack Meda by disqualification in spherical two. In the finals, on July 24th, Masanda gained gold by defeating John McKinty of Eire by details. In comparison to all Uganda’s boxing members, Masanda had received the gold in pretty a straightforward and unconventional way. This would be Uganda’s second Commonwealth Game titles’ gold medal, following that of George Oywello in 1962 in Perth in Australia.

Courtesy of the ultimate tally of gold medals gained by James Odwori, Mohamed Muruli, and Benson Masanda; and silver medals gained by Leo Rwabwogo and Deogratias Musoke Uganda experienced convincingly emerged as Commonwealth of countries’ boxing championships. This was the very first collective Worldwide victory for Uganda, and the country rejoicingly seemed ahead to additional triumphs for the Global amount. The rest of Uganda’s medals had been just two: the silver medal won by William “Bill” Koskei inside the 400 meters hurdles, along with the bronze medal received by Judith Ayaa in the 400 meters dash. The total of a few gold, a few silver, and a single bronze medal placed Uganda as ninth In general at this Commonwealth Event with seven medals. How would Uganda’s boxers fare in the following Commonwealth location that may be Christchurch in New Zealand in 1974? There were a military coup in Uganda, commander Idi Amin turned president, the routine turned infamous for killings and disappearances of nationals as well as foreigners. Stress loomed as as to if unfavorable social and political elements would translate to disappointing performances from the realm of athletics. And Certainly, numerous aspects of athletics deteriorated in the routine of Idi Amin, along with the pool of potential and recent athletes was lessened. But how would Uganda fare in Christchurch, two decades to the working day to the regime of Idi Amin?

Christchurch, New Zealand 1974

Christchurch hosted the Commonwealth of countries’ Online games from January 24th to February 2nd, 1974. The boxing flyweight division saw the returning on the gold medallist James Odwori of Uganda. During the quarter finals, on January twenty eighth, Odwori knocked out Tanzanian Olympian Bakari Selemani (Seleman) in the second round. The semi finals, held on January 31st witnessed Odwori defeat Singapore’s Syed Abdul Kadir by points. Kadir continues to be considered one of Singapore’s most renowned fighters, and was named “Sportsman in the 12 months” following his Commonwealth Video games’ bronze medal win.

The finals of the light flyweight division ended up held of February 1st. This time, Odwori could be pitted versus Kenyan Stephen Muchoki who continues to be among Kenya’s most famous boxers. The comparatively shorter Muchoki outpointed the champion Odwori, leaving Odwori to accept silver. Muchoki would properly protect his Commonwealth gold in the forthcoming location Edmonton in Canada, in 1978. His illustrious profession also included the silver medal earn at the whole world Novice Championships in Havana in 1974, and afterwards the gold from the tournament which was hosted by Belgrade in Yugoslavia in 1978. Muchoki would thereafter transfer in to the Expert ranks and also develop into Africa Boxing Union winner. But he failed in his quest for the eu title and the planet Boxing Affiliation title, and he retired from boxing during the late 1980’s.

In the quarter finals of your flyweight division, on January 29th, Ugandan John Byaruhanga knocked out John Lawless of Scotland in the second round. But from the semi finals, January 31st, Byaruhanga was defeated on points by Olympian Chandra Narayanan of India. Byaruhanga therefore settled with the bronze medal.

Uganda’s bantamweight Ali Rojo was drawn as a quarter finalist to struggle Olympian Habibu (Habib) Kinyogoli of Tanzania on January 28th. Rojo received by factors and moved on on the semi finals. Kinyogoli stays Among the most renowned of Tanzania’s boxer and he is a boxing trainer.

The January 31st bantamweight semi final was in favor of Rojo, by points, leaving Kenyan Isaac Kuria Maina to go dwelling Together with the bronze. within the finals, on February 1st, Patrick “Pat” Cowdell of England killed Ali Rojo’s quest for that gold by profitable by details. Rojo experienced gained the second boxing medal for Uganda. A famed British boxer, Cowdell would Make a formidable boxing vocation throughout which he became a ecu Union champion. But he failed to win in his fighting for your world title.

Uganda’s featherweight competitor was Shadrack (Shadrah? Shadrach?) Odhiambo. On January 29th, within the quarter finals, young foreseeable future Olympian and long time fighter Odhiambo outpointed Colin Flinn of England. Odhiambo would afterwards as a light weight welterweight struggle for Sweden and gain her a bronze medal at the planet Beginner Championships in 1982 in Munich. Odhiambo also fought for Sweden within the 1980 (Moscow) and 1984 (La) Olympics. He did not acquire any Olympic medals.

In the Christchurch Commonwealth games semi final, Odhiambo ably defeated Dale Anderson of Canada by details on January 31st. Even so, the finals, on February 1st witnessed professional Commonwealth Game titles’ winner Eddie Ndukwu of Nigeria get the gold medal with a factors determination. Odhiambo experienced received Uganda’s third boxing silver medal! Ndukwu would before long convert Skilled as well as reign as British Empire (Commonwealth) featherweight winner. Ndukwu remains One of the extra formidable names among Nigerian boxers.

On January twenty seventh, inside the preliminaries, a domestically preferred and heavily promising 20 calendar year old light weight lad Ayub Kalule climbed to the ring to problem Tanzanian William Lyimo who was exactly the same age as Kalule. Kalule received, by factors. In 1980, Lyimo aged 27 would struggle on the Olympic Games held in Moscow. He commendably passed the second spherical, but was from the quarter finals knocked out during the third spherical by twenty calendar year old Anthony Willis of Excellent Britain. He would Hence accept 5th posture inside the welterweight division. Several African nations around the world boycotted the Olympic location of Moscow. Heaney later on turned knowledgeable boxer, but he would quickly retire without having an acclaimed boxing report.

During the quarter finals with the Commonwealth Video games’ light weight boxing battle in Christchurch, on January twenty eighth 1974, Ayub Kalule ably out boxed and bloodily facially disfigured 22 calendar year old Irishman “Sugar” Ray Heaney. The battle is showcased on You Tube whereby Heaney was allotted two obligatory counts given the formidable punishing through the fast and tricky punching Kalule.

Within the semi finals, Kalule was established to face New Zealand teenager Robert Charles Colley. The outcome concerned Colley remaining outpointed and settling to the bronze medal.

Within the quarter finals, Kalule was pitted from 19 12 months previous New Zealander Robert Charles Colley. Colley could be outpointed (and accept the bronze), permitting Kalule to move on to the final phase. After remaining eradicated by Russian Valery Limasov in the very first round in the Olympic Video games of 1976 held in Montreal (Canada), Colley would flip Expert. While Colley’s professional history is spectacular, it is actually mediocre insofar as his fights were being confined to New Zealand and Australia, and Colley retired fairly early in everyday life…in 1980. On the finals of those Commonwealth Games, Kalule would outpoint Kayin Amah of Nigeria and thus gain the gold. Kayin Amah, who had inside the preliminaries missing to famous Philip Waruinge of Kenya from the former Commonwealth Online games (1970), would this time be happier with getting home a silver.

Potentially Ayub Kalule’s most prestigious beginner come upon, could well be the inaugural Environment Novice Boxing Championships which were held in Havana in Cuba in August seventeen 30. In this article, Kalule, a light weight welterweight, defeated Bulgarian Vladmir Kolev to acquire the gold. In November of the identical 12 months, Kalule nevertheless as a light welterweight, received One more gold medal for Uganda. This was on the African Novice Boxing Championships which were held in Kampala on Kalule’s soil. The following calendar year Kalule turned professional in Denmark, rose rapidly in the ranks. He could go on to be Uganda’s first Skilled entire world boxing winner (WBA junior middleweight). His accolades integrated becoming a European Boxing Union Winner, and battling such renowned boxers as “Sugar” Ray Leonard, Sumbu Kalambay, Mike McCallum, Lindell Holmes, and Herol Graham. Kalule fought in what lots of regard as the golden period of junior middleweight champions. Kalule remains Uganda’s most renowned boxer. In March 2020, Kalule was contracted to mentor leading junior Danish boxers.

Joseph Nsubuga were eliminated on points by Kenneth Mwansa of Zambia ideal originally from the preliminaries with the prior Commonwealth Game titles venue Edinburgh. There Nsubuga experienced represented Uganda as a lightweight. Nsubuga, nevertheless a teenager, was now back for the Commonwealth Games to combat as a light weight welterweight. This time, the preliminary initially spherical on January 27 witnessed Nsubuga immediately overwhelm his opponent. The combat did not go significantly. The referee halted the contest in the primary round, dashing the hopes of Philip Sapak of Papua New Guinea. On the other hand, two times afterwards during the quarter finals, James Douglas of Scotland defeated Nsubuga by details and thereby halted Nsubuga’s quest for any medal.

Months afterwards, in August, Nsubuga would acquire a bronze medal for Uganda for the inaugural World Amateur Boxing Championships in Havana. Nsubuga experienced moved up to the middleweight division. Fairly a skillful boxer, Nsubuga would switch Expert and go to Norway, and he would typically combat in Europe. Nsubuga stopped competing in 1981 when he was knocked out by renowned upcoming world champion Davey Moore. Potentially Nsubuga’s most noteworthy professional struggle was his spirited gladiator battle (non title bout) with legendary Panamanian Roberto Duran. Though Duran seemed to be tiring, Joseph “Stoneface” Nsubuga was knocked out at the conclusion of the fourth round. This struggle is out there on You Tube.

Welterweight Mohamed Muruli experienced won Uganda a gold medal on the previous Commonwealth of Nations Game titles’ venue Edinburgh. There in 1970, Muruli experienced boxed as a light weight. Listed here in Christchurch, Muruli was representing Uganda to be a welterweight. The preliminary round witnessed Muruli outpunch Caleb Okech of Kenya, on January twenty sixth. On January 29th, throughout the quarter finals, Muruli defeat future Olympian Carmen Rinke of Canada by details. The semi finals associated Muruli beating Steven Cooney of Scotland, by factors on January 31st. On February 1st, Muruli grew to become the first Ugandan to at any time acquire two Commonwealth Game titles’ gold medals by outpointing Welsh Errol McKenzie from the finals. McKenzie would turn Experienced through 1975, but he retired soon after an unimpressive boxing document. Muruli is amongst Uganda’s superb boxers, and he twice represented Uganda on the Olympics.

Uganda’s gentle middleweight John Langol was rescued with the referee who stopped the preliminaries match up of January twenty seventh 1974 in opposition to Lance Revill of latest Zealand. The combat was stopped in the second spherical. In 1981, Langol moved to Birmingham in England to battle professionally. His Experienced tenure would very last only 4 decades and it could contain an unimpressive report of six wins and 8 losses. Revill would struggle professionally in Australia and New Zealand, but his boxing history will be normal.

On January 29th of 1974, in 1 / 4 final, Uganda’s middleweight winner Mustapha Wasajja was knocked out in the primary spherical by Les Rackley of latest Zealand. On the inaugural Planet Boxing Championships held on August 1974 in Havana, Wasajja was removed by factors in the quarter finals. In November, Wasajja would grow to be Africa amateur champion with the regional tournament held in Kampala. Inside a pre Olympic international Event held in Montreal at the conclusion of November 1975, Wasajja received Uganda’s only gold on the location. Wasajja is notable for owning become the premier WBA light weight heavyweight contender after he turned Skilled. He shed the necessary championship struggle to Michael Spinks, in February 1982. Wasajja mainly fought in Europe and his boxing history is fairly remarkable. Soon after Spinks, Wasajja missing his future two fights and thereafter retired from boxing. Wasajja is among Uganda’s finest boxers.

Equally as experienced happened inside the past Commonwealth Games, the reigning heavyweight winner Benson Masanda of Uganda was directly placed from the quarter finals due to the fact there have been not a lot of contenders in the class. On January twenty eighth Masanda outpointed Fisi Brown of recent Zealand. Inside the semi finals, the referee stopped the bout in favor of legendary Nigerian Fatai Ayinla, an Olympian who experienced gained The sunshine heavyweight gold in the earlier Commonwealth Online games. Masanda was for this reason created to phase down for the bronze medal. Subsequently, the referee would end the bout in favor of Neville Meade, from the finals. Fatai Ayinla Adekunle’s accolades include things like the heavyweight gold medal in the 1973 All Africa Online games in Lagos, and also a bronze medal on the 1974 Globe Beginner Boxing Championships in Havana. He boxed for Nigeria for many years.

Uganda’s other medals were received over the observe. Uganda’s Silver Ayoo (46.07), narrowly beaten by Kenyan legendary Olympic gold medallist Charles Asati (46.04), received the silver medal from the 400 meters. Uganda’s 4 x 400m relay group received the bronze medal, guiding Kenya (gold) and England. The relay competition have been William Santino Dralu, Pius Olowo, Silver Ayoo, and John Kakonge.

The ultimate Tally

At Commonwealth Games of 1970, held in Edinburgh, Uganda’s a few boxing gold medals were gained by light flyweight James Odwori, mild welterweight Mohamed Muruli, and heavyweight Benson Masanda; and the two silver medals have been gained by flyweight Leo Rwabwogo, and featherweight Deogratias Musoke. Uganda did not get any bronze medals here.

In 1974 in Christchurch, The 2 gold medals were won by lightweight Ayub Kalule and light weight welterweight Mohamed Muruli; the 3 silver medals ended up received by light flyweight James Odwori, bantamweight Ali Rojo, and featherweight Shadrach Odhiambo; and the two bronze medals have been received by flyweight John Byaruhanga and heavyweight Benson Masanda.

That’s why, although Uganda won slightly additional boxing medals in 1974, the medals in 1970 subtly carried “far more bodyweight.” For those 8 yrs, Uganda experienced the very best newbie boxers among the Nations in the British Commonwealth. Additionally, at Each individual of your Commonwealth Video games venues, Ugandan observe athletes finished next and third (William Koskei four hundred meter hurdles and Judith Ayaa 400m, respectively in 1970, and Silver Ayoo 400m and Silver Ayoo, William Santino Dralu, Pius Olowo and John Kakonge the 4 x 400m relay, respectively in 1974). In 1970 Uganda concluded 12th In general in monitor and industry athletics; Australia, England, and Scotland had been the top 3 countries. Equally, in 1974 Uganda completed twelfth Total in monitor and field athletics; but England, Australia, and Kenya had been the top three nations around the world. The overall performances of Uganda at Every single with the Commonwealth Games venues have been consequently strikingly related. Uganda hasn’t carried out a lot better than that in the Commonwealth Games, at any time because People 1970’s.