Immanuel Naidjala retained his WBO Interim African Bantamweight title by the skin of his teeth on Friday night when he beat Emilio Norfat of Kenya on a split decision.
Two judges scored the fight 118-110, 119-109 to Naidjala while a third scored it 112-111 to Norfat.
The third result was much closer to the truth as it was a very close fight which could have gone either way.
Naidjala started cautiously and although Norfat was the busier boxer, Naidjala managed to land some telling punches on the counterattack.
By the third round he staggered Norfat with a left hook and although he was all over the Kenyan, landing quick combinations, but Norfat managed to take his punches and see out the round.
As the fight progressed, Norfat was the busier boxer, pushing the pace, while Naidjala countered with a jab and some swinging hooks that seldom found the target.
In the seventh round Norfat trapped Naidjala on the ropes and pummeled away at his head and body but Naidjala managed to get out of trouble.
By the tenth round Naidjala landed some big body shots, but Norfat shrugged them off and continued to push the pace with his jab and combinations.
Naidjala went all out to land a knockout blow in the final round but he couldn’t land a clean shot while Norfat started fooling around and responded with quick combinations.
After the fight Naidjala told Namibia Sport that he injured his hand in the fifth round and had to change his tactics.
“When I threw a jab I injured one of my fingers and I couldn’t jab hard after that anymore. I caught him a few times but it was too painful so I decided I would just do the basics, that I would only try to work on points and just try to jab and move away,” he said.
Hango claims Namibian welterweight title
In the main supporting bout Tommy Hango shocked Sacky Shikukutu with a victory on a split points decision to claim the vacant Namibian welterweight title.
When Shikukutu staggered Hango with a right hook early in the first round it seemed as if the fight would soon be over. But Hango managed to recover and as the fight wore on he grew stronger while Shikukutu’s powerful punches did not have that much effect.
Both boxers gave a great show, slugging it out toe to toe at times, with the crowd up on its feet and cheering for more.
In the end it was a very close fight and Hango got the verdict on a split decision, 95-94, 92-97, 96-94.
Jaarman suffers first defeat
In a welterweight fight Anthony Jaarman suffered his first pro defeat when Lucas Ndafoluma beat him on a fourth round technical knockout.
Jaarman shaded the early rounds with an effective jab, but the end came suddenly in the fourth round when Ndafoluma landed a big blow to the head. A stunned Jaarman dropped his guard and staggered back as Ndafoloma rushed in to finish him off.
The referee however intervened to give Jaarman a standing eight count and although Jaarman seemed ready to continue, the referee called an end to the fight.
In a lightweight fight Mathias Shiimbi maintained his unbeaten record with an impressive first round knockout victory over Sem Kambonde. Shiimbi put Kambonde down with a right hook and although he managed to beat the count, Shiimbi soon finished him off with a powerful hook to the body.
Peter Malakia also won on a first round knockout against Zimbabwe’s Ndumiso Tshabangu.
Tshabangu came out firing with all-out combinations but they hardly affected Malakia, and when he landed his first punch - a hook to the body, it was all over as Tshabangu slumped to the canvas. The referee counted Tshabango out after only 59 seconds of the first round.
The results of other fights were as follows:
Manfred Haimbanga beat Peter Philipus on a second round TKO.
Mukwendje Toivo beat Dawid Egumbo on points over four rounds.
Sakaria Lukas beat Matheus Johannes on points over four rounds.
Steven Shimbonde beat Jason Mashala on points over four rounds.