GOtv Boxing NextGen 5 will be held at Ilorin, capital of Kwara State, on August 29 and 30. This was announced in a statement by Flykite Productions, organisers of the programme.
The two-day programme, sponsored by pay television service provider, GOtv Boxing NextGen Search, explained the organisers, was developed to unearth young and talented amateur boxers, aged between 18 and 25, who are desirous of turning professional.
Participants are required to take part in sparring sessions conducted by prominent boxing coaches, who will select boxers considered ready to move into the professional cadre. Boxers selected by the coaches will have their professional licences and free medical examination paid for by the sponsors as well as have the opportunity to fight in coming editions of GOtv Boxing Night.
The organisers also disclosed that registration forms for the programme are available free of charge at the Kwara State Boxing Association Office and Referees and Judges Association Office, both at the Kwara State Stadium Complex, Ilorin; Akure Stadium Complex, Akure; Alake Sports Centre, Abeokuta; Oyo State Boxing Association Office, Lekan Salami Stadium in Ibadan, Lagos Boxing Hall of Fame Gym, Surulere, Lagos; and Nigerian Boxing Board of Control (NBB of C) Secretariat, National Stadium, Lagos.
This is the third time programme is holding outside Lagos since debuting in 2015. In 2017, it held at the Francis Aiyegbeni Boxing Gym in Ibadan. Last year, it held at Dunkin Pepper Gym of the MKO International Stadium Complex, Abeokuta. The first two editions held at the Lagos Boxing Hall of Fame Gym in Surulere, Lagos. Each of the previous editions attracted over a hundred boxers, out of which an average of 25 were considered ready to make the jump into the professional ranks.
Since its debut, GOtv Boxing NextGen Search has helped many boxers rise to local and international prominence. Among these are incumbent West African Boxing Union (WABU) welterweight champion, Rilwan “Baby Face” Babatunde, who was discovered at GOtv Boxing NextGen 1 in Lagos. He went on to become the national champion before clinching the sub-regional title and is in line for the African Boxing Union (ABU) title.
Babatunde has, also, on two occasions, won the best boxer award at GOtv Boxing Night, respectively winning cash prizes of N2million and N1million attached to the award.
Other high-flying graduates of GOtv Boxing NextGen Search are Ridwan “Scorpion” Oyekola, winner of the best boxer award at GOtv Boxing Night 15 and current national super featherweight champion; Opeyemi “Sense” Adeyemi, best boxer at GOtv Boxing Night 18; Tope “TP Rock” Musa and Prince “Lion” Nwoye.