SPORTS

Battle Of The Heavies

Groomed by two former champs Qica, Navuni ready to fight   They were groomed by two of the country’s heavyweight champion. On February 9, they are going to battle it
08 Jan 2019 10:00
Battle Of The Heavies
Boxing promoter Freddy Chand (left) with heavyweight boxer Isikeli Navuna. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Groomed by two former champs Qica, Navuni ready to fight

 

They were groomed by two of the country’s heavyweight champion.

On February 9, they are going to battle it out in a 4-round heavyweight clash under the South Pacific Boxing Promotions at Prince Charles Park, Nadi.

Fijian heavyweight champion Petero Qica Jnr who is making a return to the ring after an 8-year lapse take on rookie Isikeli Navuna.

Qica who is undefeated was trained and groomed by the late Professional Boxing and Wrestling Association (PBWA) heavyweight champion Sunia Cama in Toorak, Suva.

The hard hitting Qica went on to claim the country’s heavyweight title when he stopped Mosese Kavika in the sixth round in 2011. Kavika had held on to the title for 12 years.

However, for school teacher Navuni boxing has also been part of his life when his dad Silovate Junior Rasaku held the PBWA heavyweight title from 1997 to 1999.

Rasaku lost the title to Kavika by points in 1999 and refused a return fight because they were closely related.

“This is going to be my biggest fight,” the 28-year-old Navuni told SUNsports yesterday.

“I grew up watching my father box in the ring and one day I told myself that I need to play this sport as well.

“In 2011, I fought several times as an amateur but I had to leave boxing to concentrate on my teaching career. I was posted to various schools around Fiji for the past eight years. Now I’m teaching at Magodro Secondary School.”

Getting back to the sport was tough for Navuni but to be home with the village boxers has inspired him to make the move.

“I’m training under the watchful eyes of my father and very proud to continue the tradition,” he explained.

Navuni said he was grateful to God for his boxing talent and to promoters Freddy Chand and Mohammed Shameem for giving him the opportunity to fight.

He is now having daily sparring sessions with heavyweight boxer Vili Taganikoro and Simione Vutevute.

“There are a few other boxers who have been giving me tips so I know what to expect from Qica. This is my pro debut and I know that Qica is the champion of Fiji but I will do all my talking in the ring,” the Bukuya native from Ba added.

-edited by Leone Cabenatabua

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