Agbeko set to claim IBO title
It will be Ghana’s latest attempt to capture the height of boxing with another world title, a path already treaded by the great D.K. Poison, Azumah Nelson, Ike Quartey, Alfred Kotey, Nana Yaw Konadu, Joshua Clottey and Agbeko himself as a two-time world champion.
Yet the attraction of tonight’s fight seemed great as boxers filed into the cinema hall and then mounted the scale in turns in an orderly schedule that sometimes threatened to boil over into a chaotic programme.
The formalities finished with both Agbeko, 32, and Melendez, 33, charged up for what has been labeled, unofficially though, as a restage of “Thriller in Manila”.
At the previous day’s media workout at the Bridge Boxing Bym at Roman Ridge in Accra, the two boxers had entertained media personnel with their shadow boxing and various gym regimens, and amid the muscle-flexing that characterised their occasional face-to-face meetings, there was evidence of mutual respect for each other.
Agbeko, 28-4, has promised not to disappoint his Ghanaian compatriots, including a band of showbiz personalities such as musician Samini and actor Majid Michel who will be supporting the show.
Melendez, 34-8-3, has countered with a promise to “upset Agbeko”.
The pre-fight verbal jabs have been little, but the two have channeled energies into gym work, and it will be tonight when they mount the ring, courtesy the platform provided by Fresh King Promotions, that the hero of the affair will emerge.
Preview by Michael Quaye