The price of administrative wrangles is weighing heavily on the shoulders of the Ugandan Bombers.
Already kept in the cold for over six years as selfish administrators bickered over power, the Bombers will have to fight for medals without coach Dick Katende on the ringside.
World amateur body, Aiba, has dictated that only three-star coaches can access the ringside.
Uganda doesn’t have a coach in that category as the classifications were done between 2009 and 2013 when the country had no legitimate federation to nominate candidates. Katende, despite his vast experience, is a one-star tactician.
And on Friday evening, Michael Ssekabembe became the first Bomber to fall victim to Aiba’s stringent rule as he was kept away from his coach during his super heavyweight contest against Emmanuel Anderson of Barbados. Katende was relegated to a spectator’s role as two Kenyan coaches worked well with Ssekabembe for the UPDF soldier to record a split decision (30-27) and earn a quarterfinal berth against Ghanaian Haruna Osumanu on Tuesday.
“It’s unfortunate that coach Katende can’t take charge but there is little we can do. Aiba are enforcing their rules and it’s not only Uganda that has been affected. Almost all the Oceania countries are in the same boat with us,” Gimugu explained. “Good thing the Kenyans are willing to help us.”
Ssekabembe overcame early nerves to edge the gigantic Anderson and needs one more victory to ensure a bronze medal. “I came here with a mission to get a medal. I must fulfill that mission,” Ssekabembe said, “Anderson had very hard punches but I scored the necessary points. It was a good fight.”
Captain Rogers Ssemitala and Solomon Geko ought to borrow lines from Ssekabembe’s script as they step into the ring today. Flyweight Ssemitala is up against Sri Lanka’s Anurudha Rathnayake as Geko facing Antigua’s Yakita Asika.
COMMMONWEALTH BOXING - TODAY (3pm)
Solomon Geko (Uganda) vs. Yakita Aska (Antigua)
Rogers Ssemitala vs. Rathnayake Anurudha (Sri Lanka)
SWIMMING - 50m freestyle (w)- Heat 3
1. Jamila Lunkuse (Uganda) 27.43
100m breaststroke (m) - Heat 2
7. Joshua Ekirikubinza (Uganda) 1:16.49
SQUASH - Men’s Plate Round of 32
Robert Maycock (Bermuda) bt Ian Rukunya (Uganda)3-0(11-2, 11-5, 11-5)
Michael Kawooya (Uganda) bt Mark Tewkesbury (Gilbraltar) 11-2, 11-5, 11-3
Men’s Plate Round of 16
Bains Hartaj (Kenya) bt Michael Kawooya (Uganda) 3-2 (11-5, 11-4, 9-11, 10-12, 11-9)
BADMINTON (Team event)
Uganda 2-3 Ghana
TABLE TENNIS (Team Events)
Uganda 3-0 Zambia
Canada 3-0 Uganda
Tanzania 0-3 Uganda
WEIGHTLIFTING - Men’s 62kgs
10th: Charles Ssekyaaya 255