dream debut

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

BEIJING - Jackson Chauke has waited for a long time to enter the ring at the Olympics and the time has arrived for him to prove his worth against Tajikistan opponent, Anvar Yunuso, tonight.

The two meet in a flyweight clash over four rounds.

Each round lasts two minutes and there is a minute's break in between.

"The Tiger", as Chauke is popularly known in the fistic sport, says he has never been as spirited for a fight.

"I have been dreaming to be part of the Olympics and God has answered my prayers and now everything is in my hands to deliver," said Chauke yesterday.

The other factor that has motivated the 23-year-old is that he is the only athlete who is representing South Africa in boxing at the Beijing Olympics.

"Many people thought that being alone in this code from South Africa will work against my spirit but it has never been so," he said.

I'm more than eager to make my country proud. I have performed well in the build-up to the Olympics and I'm in the right mental frame for the Games.

"I can't wait to face Anvar. He is not a closed book because I watched him in many tournaments that I attended. He will never know what hit him," warned Chauke, the 2007 All Africa Games silver medallist.

The orthodox boxer from Tembisa, Ekurhuleni, successfully defended his African Championship in Mauritius in June as part of his preparations for Beijing.

He then flew to Ukraine for that country's tournament and claimed a bronze medal.

The talented boxer went on to win gold in the Kings Cup in Chinese Taipei.

He was in Taiwan to warm up up before joining the South African Olympics team in Deagu, South Korea last month.

Yunuso could not be traced yesterday but, according to Chauke, the 21-year-old Tajik is not just another boxer.