Kampala. Like his surprise stay in the US and eventual entry into professional boxing, so has been lightweight boxer Sharif Bogere’s homecoming, after nearly twelve years in the diaspora.
The Las Vegas resident, popular by the moniker ‘The Lion’, said he surprised even his mother whom he just texted yesterday afternoon “Mama, I’m in Kampala.”
“I am here strictly for family matters,” Bogere told Daily Monitor briefly on phone yesterday. “And I will be here for only two weeks.”
Before knitting a somewhat enviable professional career of 32 victories [20KOs] and 2 losses [including a world title shot], Bogere, who captained the national team to the 2007 Aiba World Boxing Championships, stayed in Chicago and had never returned home since.
He, however, has kept in touch with Ugandan boxing enthusiasts, especially through his Facebook pages. But even most of his 4666 followers will be surprised reading about his homecoming in mainstream media.
Nearly a month ago Bogere lost a unanimous decision to Dominican Republic’s Javier Fortuna in Carson, California.
This being a title eliminator, was his biggest career fight since he lost the WBA World Lightweight Title bout to Cuba’s Richar Abril in March 2013.
But even at 30, the Mayweather Promotions fighter remains the nearest Ugandan to winning a world boxing title since Kassim ‘the Dream’ Ouma in October 2004.
The fighter, however, retains a high rating in his division and his name will continue lurking around championship fights. Other than Ouma, the other Ugandans to have held world boxing championship belts are John ‘The Beast’ Mugabi, Ayub Kalule and Cornelius Bboza Edwards. The latter is also part of the Mayweather team.