Ume, Keama to lead boxing

John Ume

OLYMPIAN John Ume and Pacific Games gold medallist Charlie Keama are primed to lead the country’s six-man boxing team to the July 28-Aug 8 Birmingham Commonwealth Games in England.
The other four are Jamie Chang, Allan Oaike, Warren Warupi and Arthur Ray.
Papua New Guinea boxing coach Mark Keto told The National yesterday that his men had prepared well for the event and were eyeing at least one medal in their events.
“Our preparations have been good and we are now waiting to travel with the rest of Team PNG on July 21,” he said.
“I am confident that the six boxers will do well.
“Our aim is to win a medal at least.
“We have boxers who can deliver a medal.
“The last time PNG won a Commonwealth Games boxing medal was in 1998 when Lynch Ipera won bronze in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
“We can do that again.
“Our records in the recent Games show that we’ve only fallen short of winning a medal due to the judges’ decisions.
“Sometimes those decisions seem debatable, but it is what it is.
“We have to continue to fight to win a medal regardless of the circumstances.”
Keto said he was expecting big performances from Ume and Keama, given their experience.
“Charlie has been to three Commonwealth Games while Ume has been to two,” he said.
“So with their experience, I think they know what to expect.
“Both boxers almost won medals in the previous Games and they are prepared this time.
“The other boxers will make their debut in the Commonwealth Games.
“But they have competed in the 2019 Samoa Pacific Games and are prepared to do their best.”