Botswana’s Keamogetse Sadie Kenosi was among the top seeds to reach the women’s semi-finals as action continued today at the African Olympic boxing qualification event in Senegal’s capital Dakar. The 23-year-old featherweight had a huge height benefit over Algeria’s Fatima Zahra Senouci and she made it count in the opening two rounds as she caught her oncoming enemy at will.
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Senouci did better in the third round, getting inside the guard of Kenosi, but the Botswanan fighter re-recognized her lead to book a semi-final spot with a contented whole point’s decision.
Kenosi said “That win means I am well prepared and in the best shape. We had decent preparations this time. Two months of intense training in Gaborone, France and Cuba. Cuba was very decent. Since the boxers there are more knowledgeable, they are very good with movements and I have developed since then.”
Standing between Kenosi and a place in the final, which will guarantee her place at this year’s Olympics in Tokyo, is Morocco’s Widad Bertal. Some neat footwork from Bertal saw her pick off Cameroon’s Dorine Stéphane Mambou, claiming a 4-0 decision on the scorecards, with one judge scoring it an attraction.
The other last-four encounter in the women’s featherweight category pits the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Matshu Marcela Sakobi against Tunisia’s Khouloud Hlimi Ep Moulahi. Sakobi beat Mali’s Marine Fatoumata Camara, while Hlimi Ep Moulahi defeated Somalia’s Ramla Said, Ahmed Ali. The semi-final line-up was also decided today in the women’s welterweight and middleweight categories.
At welterweight, top-planted Moroccan Oumayma Bel Ahbib, who secured a unanimous points decision over Cameroon’s Bernadette Keuye, will face Kenya’s Elizabeth Akinyi and Uganda’s Emily Nakalema will see Mozambique’s Acinda Helena Panguana. Morocco’s Khadija Mardi, the number one seed at middleweight and 2019 world bronze medalists, is through to the last but one round after registering a unanimous points decision over Cameroon’s Clotilde Essiane.