Edward Kakembo called Isaac Dogboe a “dog” prior to Saturday’s showdown at Accra Sports Stadium but when the bell rang it was the Ugandan who proved to be all bark and no bite.
Dogboe (14-0, 9 KO’s) defended his WBO Africa featherweight title in emphatic fashion, stopping the previously undefeated Africa Boxing Union (ABU) featherweight champion in six one-sided rounds.
Former President Jerry John Rawlings, along with wife Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings, were among those who looked on at the Accra Sports Stadium as Dogboe exacted revenge for the harsh words Kakembo had spat in his direction during the lead up to the bout.
“Royal Storm” let his fists do the talking, coolly attacking Kakembo with a poise that belies his 21 years. A right hook to the ribs introduced Kakembo to the canvas for the first time in the opening stanza. The Ugandan beat the count but might have been better off staying down as Dogboe pelleted him with further punishment.
Kakembo, now 10-1 (3 KO’s), was more effective in the second, using his reach advantage to keep Dogboe at bay. Nevertheless, the harder blows came from the Ghanaian, who stunned Kakembo again. Kakembo doggedly stuck to his gameplan of boxing in the third, breaking through with clean shots but Dogboe continued to apply pressure with a focused attack to the body.
Perhaps sensing the inevitable KO ending, Dogboe began to toy with Kakembo, taunting him with dance moves. A straight left dropped the Ugandan for the second time. He was forced to get on his bicycle in a desperate attempt to make it out of the round.
Kakembo managed to survive but the end was nearing. It began in the sixth as Dogboe unloaded four precise uppercuts, followed by two hard body shots. Kakembo crumpled to the canvas in a heap, unable to beat the count. The official time was 2:36.
“The Republic of Ghana came to the Accra Sports Stadium for Isaac “Royal Storm” Dogboe,” the victor said afterward. “Azumah Nelson came to my training session and he showed me a few things. As a law abiding citizen, I went to the airport to welcome [Kakembo] to the country but he disrespected me by calling God’s anointed son a dog. But he should thank my dad [trainer Paul Dogboe] because I really wanted to hurt him but he told me to let it go.”
Regarding his future, he said, “I kept on saying that it takes a great man to put another great man on the map, the same way as ex-President Rawlings, he put this country [Ghana] on the map – he helped Azumah when he was climbing up; Azumah also is helping Isaac Dogboe, so how does the future looks like?
Kakembo’s comments post-fight suggests that his pride was hurting just as bad as his body.
“The food I ate at the hotel affected me in the ring,” he said.
“Next time when I’m coming to Ghana I will come with my own food. I’m disappointed because the reason why I came to Ghana, I didn’t achieve it so I want a rematch.”
Among those in attendance included Ghana’s sports minister Nii Lante Vanderpuije, Azumah Nelson, Ghana Boxing Authority (GBA) President Peter Zwennes, former GBA President Samir Kaptan and former IBF welterweight champion Joshua Clottey.
On the undercard, former Commonwealth middleweight champion, Charles Adamu KO’ed Sylvester Allotey at 1:40 of the fourth in their super middleweight clash billed for eight rounds. Adamu dominated the early action, scoring a knockdown in the second and then putting Allotey away with two successive uppercuts.
Rising lightweight star, Sheriff Quaye continues to make hay, stopping Aminu Turkson at 1:28 of the second. Turkson was overmatched from the get-go, getting peppered with jabs until a right cross finished him for the full count in the second.
In another welterweight battle, South Korea’s Lee Kyu Suk scored a first round stoppage over Ghana’s James Lamptey. The Korean landed a right hook that staggered Lamptey before dropping him with a vicious left uppercut. Official time was 1:16.
Lightweight Razak Nettey had his way with Raymond Ansah, stopping Ansah in the sixth round. Nettey was simply too much for his countryman, punishing Ansah until he and his corner waved it off.
In middleweight action, Felix Mankatah stopped Charles Tetteh at 1:45 of the third round. Mankatah put on a head-turning display of power boxing, aggressively coming forward behind a stiff jab in the first two bouts before turning up the heat in the deciding round.
The welterweight clash between Daniel Aduku and Philip Kweku ended in a technical draw after the former suffered an accidental headbutt in round two that opened up a bad cut.
Nathan Nukpe defeated Richard Dogboega via sixth round TKO in their lightweight contest billed for eight rounds. Nukpe dismantled him round by round, forcing him to retire on the stool at the start of the sixth.
Anama Dotse stopped Emmanuel Allotey in the second round of their lightweight bout.
Aziz Quartey recorded the fastest knockout of the night, at an official time of 0:45 seconds in round one as he stopped Tricky Commey in their welterweight contest.
Super middleweights Habib Ahmed and George Benson saw their fight end prematurely due to a clash of heads in the second that opened a deep cut on Ahmed’s forehead.