Manirola, Kasujja rule the ring vs Congolese

Uganda's Henry Kasujja (black/white trucks) punches DRC's Reagan Lossa Pacho in a Super Welterweight bout at Club Obligato. PHOTO/JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

Manirola, a fast-rising star, delivered what every boxing fan pays for—a ferocious knockout—more over against a very formidable opponent Gael Assumani from DR Congo.

Some of the judges’ decisions at the Lords of the Ring fight night were contestable, especially in favour of Ugandan fighters against foreigners but Farahat Manirola and Henry Kasujja’s victories were just obvious.

Manirola, a fast-rising star, delivered what every boxing fan pays for—a ferocious knockout—more over against a very formidable opponent Gael Assumani from DR Congo.

Ahead of this thriller on 12 Sports Rounds Promotions’ cards at New Obligato Saturday night, Assumani came with an immaculate 7-0 record, decorated by five knockouts, one of which against Geofrey Walusimbi Musisi in December 2022 in Goma. So, he had an idea about Ugandan fighters, but Manirola 7-1, with three knockouts in recent bouts, proved a completely different package.  

The Ugandan started this super lightweight bout cautiously, with an occasional jab to the body or the head and a right hook.

Uganda's Farahat Manirola (L) guards himself against DRC's Gael Assumani. 

He moved, head and body, quite well, to avoid counteraction though Assumani’s sharp long jab caught him, not once.

Manirola, physically disadvantaged, ensured that whenever he fought close, he reaped the best with sharp combinations mostly to the body, though his uppercut often missed Assumani’s chin.

Both fighters looked fit for the job. But Assumani made a mistake in the third round by inviting Manirola into close combat when he knew his jaw was made of glass. In that tough and brief exchange, both scored some solid shots. But when Manirola’s right caught Assumani’s left chin, he felt it. Then a left caught his right chin and he stepped back. Manirola sensed the damage and threw a flurry of hooks to the upper body before unleashing an even harder right that finished the job.

Assumani fell like a heavy statue under a virulent storm, in the neutral corner. The Congolese—who had remonstrated against the referee’s decision to discontinue Yannick Katuta against Hudson Muhumuza—this time did not wait for Irene Ssemakula to finish the count. They dashed from the blue corner, like a trained emergency rescue team to Assumani’s rescue. Another dived from outside into the neutral corner, to pull the gumshield out of the casualty’s mouth before immediately dragging him away.

Meanwhile, Manirola was flying high on the shoulders of a fan, who stormed the ring, carrying him to the other neutral corner, before storming out. Smiles and hugs followed an emphatic victory that never at all promised to come this early.

“I am so happy for this victory even if it’s a non-title,” Manirola, now 8-1, told Daily Monitor. “Unlike the other opponents I have faced, this one had power and was hard to break. But we had a game plan and I listened to my corner.”

In the last act at around 3am, Kasujja bounced back from losing the first round to dominate another DR Congo fighter Reagan Lossa Pacho. 

Referee Irene Ssemakula checks on DRC'S Gael  Assumani after being Knocked out by Uganda's Manirola  Farahat.

Kasujja, nicknamed the Stopper, took long studying Pacho, who opened with hard jabs and hooks as if ready to avenge Assumani’s defeat.

But from the second round, Kasujja used his height advantage by avoiding Pacho’s attacks and when he fought close, he threw everything to overwhelm him.

By the third, Pacho’s speed had been tamed and it was his turn to fight on the backfoot. Yet Kasujja was just starting. He pounded him, until the fifth round, as fans sang Kassim Ouma, because Kasujja idolizes the former world champion.

In the sixth and last round, Pacho scored some clear headshots but none could turn this super welterweight bout in his favour.

“I promised to crash this Congolese and you have seen what I have done. I first studied him then I became monstrous,” Kasujja, now 7-1, said before daring 2020 Olympian Musa Shadir Bwogi for a rematch.


Abdul Njego def. Tough Odoi, UD

Hudson Muhumuza def. Yannick Katuta, KO RD1

Ivan Kambagire def. Abdul-Kasozi, UD

Swalik Kisitu def. Patrick Tookema, KO RD1

Saul Male def. Stephen Nyamhanga, UD