I will fight as an amateur until 2016: Jonas

05 Aug 2014 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 05 AUG (NAMPA) - Commonwealth Games’ silver medallist Junius Jonas says he will not turn professional until the 2016 Olympics in Rio, Brazil.
The 20-year-old Namibian boxer won a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland on Saturday after losing on points in the final of the light welterweight category against Josh Taylor of Scotland.
Upon his arrival at the Hosea Kutako International Airport (HKIA) on Monday, Jonas told Nampa he was disappointed the silver because he feels he was the better fighter between the two.
“When I went into the last fight I had a pain in my right arm and that prevented me from using my full speed and power. I really wanted that gold medal for myself, and the country, but it did not work out as my opponent had the home advantage and won me on points,” he said.
He added that his participation in the Commonwealth Games has motivated him to remain an amateur boxer until the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, where he will have the opportunity to fight again in hopes of winning gold.
“While at the Commonwealth Games I learned that European boxers fight from the inside and that is where we have an advantage over them. This motivated me to train harder and go to the Olympics in two years’ time and apply what I have learned,” he said.
Bronze medal winner in the women’s T12 100 metres at the Games, paralympian Lahja Ishitile told this news agency she was happy to participate in the championships even though she was not happy with winning bronze.
“I wanted to improve my personal best record at the games, but that did not happen. I am now looking forward to future events where I will do better, because being at the Games I learned that hard work is all I need to progress in the sport,” she said.
Ishitile’s guide David Shavuka Ndeilenga seconded what the athlete said, saying while in Glasgow they learned that other athletes train throughout the year and not only when they are preparing for an event.
“Being a guide you always need to be fit as this is not an easy job. Other athletes that we ran with told us they train for the whole year. The guide and athlete have a better understanding because of the better communication between them.
We have now learned a good lesson that we should implement, but this will only be possible if we get the right support,” Ndeilenga said.
He also stated that despite winning bronze, Ishitile did not run her personal best at the Games.
“We jumped from the starting line late because we were afraid of a false start, but we won bronze because of Ishitile’s speed and commitment. I believe next time she can do better with good training,” he said.
Ndeilenga further called on the private sector and Government to come on board and start supporting athletes if they want to see gold medals in the future.
Namibia won three medals at the Commonwealth Games, which ended on Sunday.
Besides Jonas’ silver and Ishitile’s bronze, paralympian Johanna Benson also won bronze in the women’s T34 long jump.