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NestorÔÇÖs unsung sixth sense

Mon, 9 December 2013 04:42
by Michael Uugwanga
Sports

Most people do not know he is a sibling to Paulus ‘The Hitman’ Moses and most fans have no clue he is the backbone of Nestor Tobias’ Sunshine gym.
For Immanuel Moses, aka Imms, being in the shadows of great men is just but one of his characteristics. That the spotlight is always on Nestor and the boxers at press conferences, fights and even at the ring sides, has made Imms work better without pressure.
No boxer gets into the ring without Imms’ approval; call him Nestor’s side kick if you will. However, he has as much powers as Nestor himself when it comes to the local boxing circle.
The difference between the two is that Nestor is the godfather; he rarely smiles and is ever astute while Imms lightens the mood and would leave the rest to Nestor for conclusion.
“I first met Nestor in 2000 but only got into boxing in 2001 in Lüderitz (now Naminus) where I was helping out in a gym. I never really aspired to getting involved in the sport until I was appointed the team manager for the region. In 2002, I came to Windhoek to live with my brother, Paulus (The Hitman) in Shandumbala, Katutura and we would go to the gym together. I played soccer at Benfica and I can even play for the Brave Warriors today. I train every boxer at the academy,” Imms reveals.
Because there is Immanuel ‘Prince’ Naindjala and his brother The Hitman, few people know Imms. He cannot assume his first nor his surname names, as this confuses most fans and first-timers.
Usually, Imms travels abroad with the godfather, where his role is often to keep the fighting boxer focused ahead of a match while Nestor gets around the paper-work of the fight.
Late last month, he could not be with Nestor in Japan where Prince was ‘decisioned’ for the WBO title. He had to stay at home to keep Wilberforce Shihepo ready for last Friday’s fight. Not only had he to train him in the gym but he also had to do the paper-work.
How he came to be the side-kick of Nestor is like a script from one of those Hollywood dramas.
“I knew Tobias when he was still a boxer. When he begun working with Rambo Antindi and the likes of Paulus Ambunda, Sacky Shikukutu, Samuel Kapapu and Jatoorora Tjingaveta who at the time were amateurs, my job was to give them pads. It was exciting and fun. I can tell you now I grew fast in the business; that’s why I started training the amateurs.”
Now he commands the respect Nestor receives, on merit.
He admits, “In the gym, I have been more of a student than a coach. I learn every day from each boxer. I watch a lot of Mayweather, because I am a huge fan of his.”
The 30-year-old former Benfica goalkeeper has danced with almost every boxing world title holder in this country.
He does not lose sight of his Samsung Galaxy note 10.1, which he refers to as his office, though.
“I bought it (Galaxy) in Japan for N$10 000 and it is not to show off but it is for work, especially with the media; like when I need to send you guys pictures of fights while out of the country,” he says.
For his dedication, Imms was appointed the trainer of the Namibia Police Force boxing team in 2003, before being announced as the assistant coach of the Zone Six championships held in Botswana in 2007.
“My desire now is to work more with small boys aged between five and 10. If any parent has a kid whom they think is good at boxing, they should bring them to me, because other countries have boxers who become champions while they’re only 19 years old and this is what we aim to accomplish, as well.”
sports@thevillager.com.na