Malawiâ€™s female professional boxer Agnes Mtimaukanena on Sunday won the light middleweight World Boxing Federation (WBF) belt after she outsmarted Kenyan Susan Adezo.
The entertaining fight was staged at Nankhaka ground in Area 30, Lilongwe.
Twenty-year-old Mtimaukanena won the eight-round bout on a unanimous points decision.
Judges Salome Manyau and Omar Yazid of Tanzania scored 80/72 each for Mtimaukanena whereas Cassim Makwinja scored her 79/73 on his card.
The gathering at the bout, that attracted high-profile personalities such as Youth and Sports Minister Enock Chakufwa Chihana and Tanzanian High Commissioner Patrick Tsere, observed a minute of silence in honour of the late president Bingu wa Mutharika.
Mtimakunena sent the home crowd into frenzy with well combined punches that forced Adezo to retreat throughout the rounds. Lack of a killer punch saw Adezo going the full distance.
In the seventh round, Mtimakunena almost floored her, but the latter survived the onslaught.
The visiting boxer had a rare moment inside round five, but her combinations were not enough to stop Mtimaukanena who had hoped to win with TKO.
“I am not happy because I wanted to win the bout with a technical knock out. But I am glad to have fulfilled the promise of winning the belt. Now, I am looking forward to what challenges Africa will bring,” said Mtimaukanena.
Adezo conceded defeat and attributed it to fatigue.
“I have been travelling for five days. I only rested on Saturday. I did not have time to even train as I lost appetite throughout the journey, so this affected my performance. I only thank God that I managed to last all the eight rounds,” she said.
Adezo, who said will challenge the belt, appealed to organisers of the bouts to fly boxers who are coming from far away.
Chihana said he was impressed with Mtimaukanenaâ€™s performance.
“What she has done is for the national pride. She will be a role model to female boxers and we will try to find sponsorship for her,” said Chihana.
Ngumi Boxing Promotions manager Stephen Msiska, who organised the event, said he was satisfied with the standard of the boxing.
“The boxing lived to its expectations and people have enjoyed every minute of it. It pleased us that the boxer that Maba rejected to give a professional licence has now turned to be the African woman boxer. We are now looking forward to organising world championship bouts for her,” said Msiska.