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World Champ Kovacs Delights Whole Country

Posted on December 20 2009                                              Bookmark and Share


Tamas ‘Tomi Kid’ Kovacs wrote history on Friday night when he clinched the vacant World Boxing Federation ligh theavyweight title to become Slovakia’s first-ever professional boxing world champion with a unanimous decision over Samson Onyango of Kenya.

Although the three judges (Ernst Salzgeber of Austria, Miklos Döry of Hungary and Jan Sedlak of Slovakia) had Kovacs ahead by 116:114 and 117:112 (twice), it was probably much closer than that. In fact, Onyango got into it pretty well and from the start showed that he meant business.

The 32-year-old Kovacs, who progressed from International title level, adjusted in the middle rounds and started to collect the points that allowed him to still keep a lead when Onyango was coming on very strongly in the final quarter of the fight. In the 11th round, with the Nairobi boxer going all out, Kovacs looked shaken, but fired on by his frenetic fans he collected himself to stay out of trouble in the ultimate round. Although hard fought, it was always fair and Croatian referee Zvonko Rukavina had a fairly easy night. Supervisor was European Coordinator Olaf Schroeder.

When the decision was announced, the packed venue in ‘Tomi Kid’s’ hometown of Galanta rejoiced. It was packed up until the roof with 850 people and the promoters announced that for Kovacs’ first defence they will be looking for a venue much bigger. “We could have sold three or four times the amounts of tickets,” said promoter Zoltan Petranyi.

At the after-fight press conference, Onyango’s trainer Joseph Akhasamba said he would welcome a rematch and his boxers effort was widely applauded. The fight was televised live in Slovakia and Laszlo Paszterko, General Secretary of the national federation was similarily delighted:

“We thank the World Boxing Federation for their support of Slovakian boxing, we are very happy to work with a serious organization like them and hope that this was the shot in the arm to bring the sport to a new level in our country.” Kovacs’ record now stands at an unblemished 15-0 (10), while Onyango fell to 19-5 (12).

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