Boxing: Tamuka Mucha targeting title victory for Reading


Reading boxer Tamuka Mucha with double Olympic gold medallist Nicola Adams
10/04/2017 00:00:00
by Reading Chronicle
Welterweight boxer Tamuka Mucha
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READING welterweight Tamuka Mucha is desperate to pay back the town which has allowed him to live his dream, writes Danny Flexen.

The undefeated Zimbabwe-born fighter followed his mum, a nurse, to Reading aged just 11.

And after overcoming a struggle to shed weight and fit in, he has now developed into a popular athlete on the verge of a British title shot.

Now he wants to be one of the finest boxers to ever come from these parts.

“My big ambition is to become a world champion but the short-term goal is to become British champion and one of Reading’s best,” Mucha, trained by decent 1970s pro Trevor Francis, declared.

“I’ve called out the British champion Bradley Skeete and I hope he responds. I’m back out on April 15 in a keep-busy fight against Rob Hunt, who is quite tall, so he’s good preparation for (the lofty, rangy) Skeete.

“I can learn some things about myself and I can adjust before I fight Skeete.”

Mucha weighed a whopping 105kg at the age of 15 – a love of food compounded by the isolation of being a stranger in a strange land – but boxing proved his saviour and helped him shed almost 40kg en route to his first amateur title.

“I used to go to the gym when I was in high school (now the John Madjeski Academy),” the 24-year-old reflects.

“I got my fitness up then I went to Reading ABC. Everyone was looking at this 105kg 14 or 15-year-old kid and they were like: ‘Oh my goodness, there’s no hope for this kid.’ But I was just determined to be the best I could become.

“It wasn’t just boxing training, the vice-principal at my high school used to take us to the gym once every Friday. I learned to run on a treadmill, then I joined the gym next to my house.”

He continued: “I’d do 20 minutes in the morning, 20 in the evening, then I started increasing my mileage. Once I started boxing I had found something I loved, something I was passionate about and going to the gym became so much easier. Plus I was only about 5ft 5ins then, so not big enough for a heavyweight; I had to lose weight!

“After going to the boxing gym, I was gaining confidence, started making friends and actually enjoying life in the UK.”

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