By SANDRA MWILA In Mongu –
CATHERINE Phiri mesmerised fans when she beat Joyce Chileshe to win on unanimous points decision in an exhibition match at Mongu Stadium.
The World Boxing Council (WBC) silver bantamweight champion was a darling to the over 2,000 fans that thronged Mongu Stadium to have a glance at Zambia boxing icon.
Catherine dominated the fight from the first round throwing punches at will at Chileshe who resorted to holding in a bid to avoid further beating and also to frustrate her opponent.
That tactic saw Chileshe’s points docked by referee William Sekeleti following her persistent hugging instead of fighting and that seemed to annoy Catherine who responded by unleashing a powerful right punch.
The punch sent Chileshe to the ropes to the amusement of the fans that included Western Province permanent Secretary Augustine Seyuba, Indunas from The Barotse Royal Establishment and Nelly Mutti, the owner of Nalumba Lodge.
Chileshe had to depend on Sekeleti to save her from further beating by Catherine, whose punches easily landed on her opponent’s face at will to win second round.
The third round saw Chileshe looking more confident managing to score some points over a dominant Catherine who started looking for a knockout to kill off the fight as the fans cheered her on as the Kitwe-based boxer held on.
“It was a good fight but Chileshe is lucky I spared her because I wanted to entertain the crowd and especially that this was just an exhibition match. Otherwise I would have gone for a knockout,” Catherine said in an interview after the fight.
Chileshe said she was happy that she managed to contain Catherine through the four rounds despite being written off prior to the fight.
“I think fighting the likes of Catherine will make me become a better boxer and I am happy with the way I fought. People thought I would be knocked out but I stood firm finishing the four rounds,” she said.
Catherine went away with K6,000 as Chileshe pocketted K2, 500.
Meanwhile, Lorita Muzeya beat Chitalu Mulenga to win on unanimous points decision in a welterweight supporting bout.
Welterweight Isaiah Chilufya and Mbiya Nkanku, from DR Congo, fought to a draw in the supporting bout main fight that many thought would go to the Congolese boxer while Pathias Chisenga clobbered Bernard Mwango in the Bantamweight category to also win on unanimous points.
In the amateur ranks, the four national team boxers got preparations ahead of the Africa Youth Games to be held later in Botswana after winning their respective matches.
Flyweight Alfred Muwowo beat Michelo Machila as Nkumbu Silungwe proved too strong for Peter Ngoma. Juliana Kasoka beat Joyce Luse while Timothy Chiyesu beat Rodwell Ngulube.