Shot in the arm for kasi boxing trainer

For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land .

These are the words of reason from above, according to Deuteronomy 15:11, which are meant to encourage those that have not forgotten those who do not have. The words found place in the ears of boxing promoter Tshele Kometsi, who responded humanly to the cry for help from amateur boxing trainer Charles Mtshali.

Mtshali, 50, of Bigger Walker Boxing Gym in Tsakane on the East Rand made a plea through Sunday World's sister newspaper Sowetan some time ago for assistance with anything that can help him conduct proper training to his 48 boxers.

He said it was not proper to take boxers to fights when he had not given them sparring and they had not held pads so as to sharpen their skills. That was because he did not have any.

Mtshali's makeshift gym is in his yard. He said he could not stop what he was doing because of lack of proper equipment. His concern was that an idle mind is where the devil plays, and if children do not have anything to do after school they will do drugs, drink alcohol and be involved in crime.

Kometsi visited Mtshali and his brigade this week and donated 12 pairs of boxing gloves.

"I discovered that SA has hidden talent. I was surprised to see young boys looking like they are seasoned boxers. What I saw there was exciting and I see champions of tomorrow," said Kometsi.

"Mtshali is doing a good job and his boys are committed. They were there in numbers and we were entertained with sparring sessions of about seven bouts of true quality.

"They have no proper training equipment but they have love of the sport. It was intriguing to see that Mtshali remembers each of the boxers' nicknames. He has no sponsor and is not getting any cent out of it but is driven by the love of the sport. Who knows, maybe this man can produce an Olympian."

An emotional Mtshali said: "My cries have finally been answered. I want to thank promoter Kometsi. This is the first time in my life to get boxing gloves ... my boxers are also excited."

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