A trilling and rather emphatic display of self-confidence and power marked the return of former Namibian world boxing champion Harry Simon, when he dispatched Hungary’s Zoltan Kiss Jr via a knock-out in their non-title bout in Windhoek at the weekend.
“He is on his way to bigger things and the biggest will be to land (Bernard) Hopkins. We want him and we are going to get to fight him. Its just a matter of time and Harry is determined. He is back,” Simon’s manager, Anita Tjombe told The Villager yesterday.
Hopkins, who is still active, on 9 March this year defeated Tavoris Cloud for the IBF light heavyweight championship of the world at age 48, becoming the oldest man in recorded boxing history to win a recognized world boxing championship and to break the record set 21 months earlier, by himself.
Tjombe says the journey of Simon to get world back at his feet started with the fight on Saturday night, when he overpowered the Hungarian and dismissed his challenge already in the second round, despite the scheduled eight rounds.
Tjombe says they are ready to take on the world and revealed that Simon will next fight on 30 August as a challenger to Jozsef Nagy (also from Hungary) for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) Cruiserweight title.
“We must go for this fight and the IBF also confirmed the date. I would have liked Harry to fight in Windhoek, but maybe due to sponsorships, we might have it in South Africa,” she says.
She adds that Simon will be required to lose at least five more kilograms before that fight.
Simon extended his impressive record to 28 fights without a defeat in the paid ranks and aims to extend that feat with more fights, despite his age.
Tjombe says: “I was overwhelmed with so much excitement after the win and I am very proud of him. He made Namibians proud and the support he got was fantastic. That only encourages us to move forward and with the commitment that Harry has now to further advance his career, I cannot see anything stopping us.”
Simon is Namibia’s first ever professional boxer who won both the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) Junior middleweight and Middleweight championship titles and at 38, he has vowed to rake in more titles at that level.
Simon has long eyed America’s explosive Hopkins (also dubbed as The Executioner) and Tjombe still thinks that Simon can have a go at him.
Hopkins is most widely known for his career in the middleweight class, where he held at least a piece of the championship in that class from 1994 until 2005. Having held the IBF’s middleweight title first, he unified the titles of all three of boxing’s major sanctioning bodies in 2001 by winning the World Boxing Association and World Boxing Council titles.
Meanwhile, Nampa reports that in the main supporting bout of the evening, Namibia’s defending champion Gottlieb Ndokosho brought a 12-round scheduled bout to an end when he claimed a technical knockout over Egyptian boxer Ibrahim Mostafa in the second minute of the third round.
The two boxers were contesting for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) Intercontinental Africa Featherweight title, with Mostafa challenging for the title.
There were also several other under-card fights at the event, of which Tjombe says has attracted at least 2 000 spectators, while over 100 people could not be allowed to eneter as the venue was packed to the rafters.