The three local pugilists, Imran Khan, Dennis Thomas and Eon Bancroft currently on a month long training and competition stint in Cuba, suffered decision losses in their respective bouts at the Giraldo Cordova Cardin International Boxing Tournament which concluded on Sunday.
According to reports from president of the Guyana Boxing Association (GBA) Steve Ninvalle, last year’s Junior Sportsman of the Year, Khan, fighting in the bantamweight division, lost to Cuban Norlan Yera, 30-26 in a punch-filled encounter.
Bancroft dropped a 22-25 points decision in his welterweight bout with China’s Maimatti Tusunqiong while middleweight Thomas’s loss (28-29) came at the hands of Venezuelan Raphael Gonzales.
Ninvalle stated that reports out of Cuba suggest that the three boxers put up valiant efforts.
He told this publication that world class competition was needed for the boxers in order for them to realize the goal of medaling at the 2016 Olympic Games in neighbouring Brazil.
“Russia has a competition coming up in September and they have invited us and agreed to cover some of the expenses. We have to keep going to these tournaments to be on the correct path on the road to the Rio (De Janeiro) Games,” he added.
While in Cuba, Khan, Bancroft and Thomas will compete again at the Roberto Balado Cup from July 19-23.
Over 157 boxers from 20 countries, including two Cuban squads competed in the five-day event.
The visiting teams include those of Guyana, Russia, China, Brazil, Venezuela, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Algeria, and Colombia, as well as participating fighters from Canada, Chile, Republic Dominican and England.