Jonas reaches Commonwealth Games semis

Namibia's Junias Jonas, right, fights France's Hassan Amzile during a men's light welterweight 64-kg preliminary boxing match at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

… Ndevelo, Hamunyela eliminated

Otniel Hembapu

Namibia’s most promising amateur boxer Jonas Junias Jonas yesterday outfoxed Sri Lanka’s Dinidu Ponawela Vidanalage Don during their action-packed 64kg category fight at the Commonwealth Games to reach the semifinals of one of the world’s biggest sports showpieces.

On his way to the semifinals, the 24-year-old Namibian nimble-fingered pugilist first announced his arrival at the
games with a splendid victory over Bahamian opponent Rashield Williams in his opening bout in the highly competitive 64kg category.

Next on his slaying list was Valentin Kondakov of Samoa, whom Jonas made easy work of with a 2nd round knockout to book a place in the quarterfinals, where he confronted Vidanalage yesterday in search of a place in the semifinals.

As was expected, Jonas – who scooped a silver medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games to become only the fourth Namibian boxer to win a medal at the games – proved to be too much for the somewhat slow and ineffective Samoan, whom he convincingly outscored to secure a place in the semifinals.

With the victory, Jonas – who was the Namibian flagbearer at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – will now face England’s Luke McCormack in the second semifinal of the day on Friday, where he is expected to deliver another spirited performance.

Jonas remains the only Namibian boxer at the games, after compatriots Matias Hamunyela and Tryagain Ndevelo were knocked out of the competition following their defeats. Hamunyela lost to Shaffi Hassan of Kenya while Ndevelo succumbed to the quick hand of Harry Garside of Australia.

More action is expected from Team Namibia, which is competing in boxing, Para-sport, triathlon, cycling, gymnastics, athletics and bowls at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, which ends on April 15.

On target… Namibia’s leading amateur boxer Jonas Junias Jonas (right) yesterday defeated Sri Lanka’s Dinidu Ponawela Vidanalage Don to reach the semifinals at the Commonwealth Games, where he will now face Englishman Luke McCormack in Friday’s semifinals.


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