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Nigeria’s Nestor Bolum floors Thailand’s Siakane in battle of Sydney

By Gowon Akpodonor
14 November 2016   |   3:12 am
Nigeria’s former Commonwealth and Olympics boxer, Nestor Bolum, made a big return to the ring at the weekend in far away Sydney, Australia, where he beat his challenger, Apichet Siakane of Thailand, on points.
Nestor Bolum of Nigeria (right) exchanging punches with Akhil Kumar of India in the men’s Bantamweight 54 kg semifinal bout at Melbourne Exhibition Centre during 2006 Commonwealth Games.

Nestor Bolum of Nigeria (right) exchanging punches with Akhil Kumar of India in the men’s Bantamweight 54 kg semifinal bout at Melbourne Exhibition Centre during 2006 Commonwealth Games.

Nigeria’s former Commonwealth and Olympics boxer, Nestor Bolum, made a big return to the ring at the weekend in far away Sydney, Australia, where he beat his challenger, Apichet Siakane of Thailand, on points.

Bolum, one of Nigeria’s last men standing at the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, told The Guardian shortly after the bout on Friday that he was so excited to emerge victorious despite not taking part in active boxing since January 2011.

He fought in the Bantamweight 54kg class at Athens 2004 Olympics, where Thailand’s Worapoj Petchkoomin edged him out in the quarterfinal. But on Friday in Sydney, Bolum, a former Nigerian Air Force officer, who hails from Ughelli, Delta State, paid the people of Thailand back in their own coins by outclassing Apichet Siakane in their 60kg fight.

“I am grateful to God for this victory,” Bolum said in a message to The Guardian. “When my manager told me few months ago that my opponent is from Thailand, my mind went back to that incident in Athens Olympics, where I lost in the quarterfinal to Worapoj Petchkoomin of Thailand. I took it as a big challenge, and trained very hard for this fight because I wanted to announce my comeback to the ring in a very big way. I am grateful to my fans, both in Australia and back home in Nigeria for their words of encouragement,” Bolum stated.The fight, which saw fans paying between $60 and $2,000 as gate fees, took place at Club Punchbowl in Sydney.

While the Nigerian had laid off boxing since January 2011, and had just one warm up match in August this year, his opponent in Friday’s bout, Siakane of Thailand, had over 60 Mai Thai boxing fights.

“My plan was to knock him down, but Siakane repelled every move I made. He is a very strong boxer, but thank God I won on points,” Bolum added.

The Nigerian trained under Mark Gresch of Jabout Boxing gymnasium for the bout, and Nick AMS Scaffolding in Sydney under Neutral Corner Fights Promotion packaged the fight.

Bolum grabbed a silver medal for Nigeria at Abuja 2003 All African Games, and was a semifinalist at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne in 2006, where he lost to eventual winner, Akhil Kumar. He took his professional boxing career to Canada some years ago before relocating to Sydney.

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