29th July, 2011
Yusuf Sulaiman is the Coordinator of Lagos Boxing Hall of Fame. In this interview with Boxing In Focus, he spoke about the monthly boxing championship and the state of the game in Nigeria
There is a monthly boxing show put together by the Lagos Boxing Hall of Fame. Could you tell us about the event?
The name of the event is tagged the Lagos State Hall of Fame Boxing Show. We have been holding the show for some time now. It is a monthly event and it comes up every last Saturday of the month. The 22nd edition will come up this Saturday, 30 July at Mobolaji Johnson Sports Centre.
Could you tell us briefly the expectations of the organisers of this boxing event?
The main objectives of the Lagos State Hall of Fame Boxing Show is to promote amateur boxers and to develop boxing in Lagos State in general. It is our aim to discover potential boxing champions. We also make it a point of duty to help and encourage amateur boxers within the state.
Apart from this show, is there any other way you encourage boxers in the state?
To be candid, we have also gone international. Apart from the monthly boxing shows that we use to promote boxers in the state, we also have an international boxing event that is designed to expose our boxers to their counterparts in other climes. This event is tagged Lagos Versus Repton Boys Club. The Repton Boys Club is in the United Kingdom. We did the first edition last year and the second edition will come up on 22 September at the Eko Hotel, Lagos Island. We use this boxing show as a platform for our boxers to express themselves and at the same time to exhibit their talents.
Do you give rewards to boxers that participate in your shows?
Yes, we do give rewards to boxers that participate in our shows. We give monetary rewards to boxers for the winners in the tournament as a way of motivating them.
How do you see the state of boxing in Nigeria?
The state of boxing in Nigeria is not encouraging at all. In fact, it is obvious that Nigerian boxing is yet to assume its rightful place in the international scene. That is the reason Lagos is in the forefront of restoring Nigerian boxing to its former glory.