Corporates will be battling it out again in the ring when they take to the Vailima Corporate boxing fight night this Saturday at St. Josephs College.
Fesola’i Va’inga Tuigamala said that creating good competitions are necessary especially in the lead up to the Pacific Games 2019.
It’s also a chance for fighters to showcase their talents of which there is no shortage of here on the island.
“We’ve certainly got the talent, we’ve got a huge amount of talent here,” he said.
“It’s a matter of nurturing them and giving them opportunities. I’ve been here five years and I tell you it’s one of the best-kept secrets in the Pacific islands.”
“We’ve started school boxing competition and trying to get into the grassroots clubs with the inter-club competitions every Saturday but we also need good coaches and good facilities. As much as we have talent, it’s always going to be challenging.”
By challenge, Tuigamala means that like every sport in Samoa, boxing goes through financial difficulties and not only are these types of fighting events necessary in the pathway to the South Pacific Games, its necessary for their sport federation to show they’re capable of creating their own funds
“I think sometimes we rely too much on the government instead of asking out there and trying to find other sources of income,” he said.
“Even if it’s just fundraising - by doing this, these kids earn their right to compete. So often we look at the government but to be honest we need a hand up not a handout.”
“The reality is funding is low and we just got to continue working together and find ways to put into action these boys dreams because it can be shown with the likes of David Tua and Maselino Masoe these are achievable goals.”
The main sponsor of the event, Vailima Breweries was represented by Anare Wailevi who echoed Tuigamala’s belief that the boxing talent in the Pacific is a sleeping giant.
“We are always proud to be sponsors every year,” Wailevu said.
“This is a big build up to the South Pacific Games as we all know. On the other side of the coin, every Samoan always want to be in the world states like Tua and Parker and this is why you need to support it from community level. It’s very important that it’s sponsored in the right manner and given the right products to enhance it to another level.”
Tuigamala added that as the only sport in the 2019 Pacific Games to be taken out to Savaii, they endorse the move and look forward to taking it back to the home island of some of the best boxers Samoa has produced historically.
“Some of our greatest boxing champs are from Savaii like Maselino Masoe, Monty Betham Sr., Warren Fuiava – they have been great champions in the past. We’ve done shows with Plantation boxing and Tumua and Pule over there and the support is phenomenal.”
“I have no doubt that’s It’s been a good choice even though it’s been the only sport that’s been taken out to the other island. But mark my words – they will come to Savaii.”
The Vailima Coporate Boxing Fight night will take place this Saturday night at 6pm in the St Josephs College Hall (doors open at 5pm). Admission is $5 for Under 14yrs and $10 for adults.