Kiribati boxers tell the world about their preparations for Commonwealth games

AUSTRALIA – GOLD COAST – Even Anthony Joshua would struggle to beat the world’s best faced with the hardships confronting Kiribati’s Commonwealth Games boxers.

While Britain’s undefeated heavyweight world champion counts the millions from Saturday’s win over New Zealander Joseph Parker, Kiribati’s boxers have had to prepare without even a boxing ring.

“We make do outside or in a house as our ring is broken at the moment,” said Tekamwi Rabaere, coach of the two boxers representing the Pacific Ocean island in Australia’s Gold coast.

“We try to design a ring, but it is not the same.”

Worse still, the tiny nation has just two pairs of usable boxing gloves.

“When we share the gloves with everyone,” added Rabaere, saying that while Kiribati — population 115,000 — is woefully short of facilities and equipment, they have plenty of talented boxers.

“If we have more capacity, more gloves, more rings and better coaches, it will encourage many more to come and train,” said Rabaere.

No matter how Tevii Steven and Betero Aaree fare in Australia — and they will not be expected to get far in the tournament — Rabaere believes they can inspire others back home.

“For our two boxers, the Commonwealth Games is the best exposure to different fighters and different styles and techniques,” he said ahead of yesterday’s opening ceremony.

“It is really important for our two guys to share their knowledge and teach everyone what they learn when they go back home.

Kiribati athletes took part in the official opening of the Commonwealth Games yesterday. The games started yesterday and would finish on April 15. Weightlifter David Katoatau was the country’s flag bearer during the opening ceremony.

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source; AFP and Kiribati olympics Facebook page

2 Comments

  1. So you are telling us that these two boxers are just there to get beat up by professional fighters in the hope that Kiribati Boxing will receive aids? Brave boys…that’s the Kiribati Spirit…God Speed!!!

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