Namibian boxer Jonas Junias Jonas’ 2020 Olympics medal dreams were crushed by Australian boxer Harry Garside in the men’s lightweight bout of the ongoing Tokyo Olympics on Saturday.
The Swakopmund native, who was the favourite of many Namibians to bring home a medal from the ongoing Olympic Games, lost 5-0 in the Round of 16.
Reacting to the loss, former Olympian and World Champion, Paulus Ambunda said he was disappointed that Jonas fell short, and suggested he turns professional for him to return to winning ways.
“I am disappointed that his dreams of winning a gold medal at the Olympic were shattered, but those things happen in life. I think it’s time for him to realise it’s time to for him to turn pro and win again,” said Ambunda.
“I believe making it to the Olympics is already a huge milestone; he should just be grateful for it and focus on what the future holds for him.”
Another Olympian and former Commonwealth champion, Paulus Ali Nuumbembe said the loss is a huge disappointment for the boxer and the boxing fraternity at large, given the fact he had high hopes of winning a medal at this year’s Olympics.
He added that people should expect such things to happen in sports. Nuumbembe too said Jonas should turn professional for him to win more titles.
“I thought he was going to do better, but that’s boxing…when you prepare for your opponent, they are preparing the same way too,” he said.
“For now, it’s time for him to turn pro and see what he could do as a professional boxer. He needs a promoter who will push him fast. He is a skilful boxer and likely to thrive when he fully commits to his career as a professional boxer,” said Nuumbembe.
Chairperson and promoter of MTC Kilimanjaro Boxing Club, Joseph Benhard, who competed at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, said despite Jonas’ loss, he did what he could and made the country proud. The promoter added that Jonas had gone through a lot this year, which he thinks could have caused the upset.
“It was disappointing for him and us, the boxing fraternity, but I believe he did what he could; gave it his best but unfortunately things did not go his way. But we are proud of what he did, and he made the country proud,” he said.
“What he had gone through (imprisonment) was tough to have a good state of mind. Even his preparations – I don’t think he had enough time to prepare. There’s a lot of factors that could have led to his early exit,” said Benhard.
Meanwhile, rower, Maike Diekmann finished her last race at the ongoing 2020 Tokyo Olympics Games on Friday, with a sixth place in the C Finals and an 18th position out of 32 rowers overall.
Disappointing… Namibian boxer Jonas Junias Jonas’ 2020 Olympic medal dreams crushed.