Connect with us


Madoka pays glowing tribute to Mwarangu



Madoka pays glowing tribute to Mwarangu

Former national boxing team Hit Squad coach, the late Peter Mwarangu will be laid to rest on Tuesday at the Lang’ata Cemetery, Nairobi.

As preparations to accord Mwarangu, 82, a befitting send-off, the sporting world continued to pay tribute to the fallen tactician.

Former Amateur Boxing Association of Kenya (ABAK) now Boxing federation of Kenya (BFK) chairman, Major (Rtd) Marsden Madoka, said that the country has lost a boxing gem, a man who was committed to the boxing course.

Mwarangu succumbed to an illness on Sunday.

According to his family, the body of Mwarangu, a former Senior Superintendent at Kenya Prisons Service, will leave Montezuma Mortuary on Tuesday at 9am for a funeral service at ACK St Augustine, Madaraka, Nairobi before the burial the same day.

Madoka, who retired from boxing after the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, said for the 21 years he served as chairman, the Hit Squad made history with Mwarangu as the head coach. 

“We were respected by the Amateur International Boxing Association (AIBA) and feared by many countries,” said Madoka, adding that Mwarangu was instrumental to the formation of the defunct Inter- Service Boxing Championships, the Kenya Prisons Boxing Club and Ndenderu Boxing Club, Kiambu.

Madoka said the Inter- Service Boxing Championships brought out a “big night” at the Charter Hall Nairobi involving different units from Kenya Defence Forces, Kenya Prisons Service and the National Police Service.  

“It was a beautiful event with the finals coming at night where youngsters came to fight. They went flat-out just to impress their respective Commanders and fans,” said Madoka.

Madoka said that Mwarangu’s peak of his coaching career as the head coach was at the 1987 Nairobi All Africa Games (now African Games) and the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

Madoka noted that Mwarangu guided Kenyan boxers to win a record eight gold medals at the 1987 All Africa Games at Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi.

Mwarangu, who took over the reign at the national team from Irish coach Max McCollough, handled the team to the 1968 Olympic Games where the late Philip Waruinge settled for bronze, Kenya’s first ever boxing medal at the Olympics.

“It was a beautiful scene that I shall forever treasure,” said Madoka, adding that a year later, Mwarangu would again lead Kenya to the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea where Kenya’s Robert Wangila became the first African to win a gold medal at the Olympics.

“He was well-versed with boxing rules, knew how to study the game, and was a charming coach who rarely questioned referees’ decisions,” said Madoka. “We shall miss him but I am happy that he helped mentor young coaches and referees.”

Madoka regrets that the Hit Squad is now a pale shadow of former self. “Boxing both amateur and professional, has gone down due to lack of good leadership.  “The current crop of leaders lacks vision,” said Madoka. 

Source link