WINDHOEK, Feb. 19 – After suffering defeat as a result of one of Boxing’s most dubious calls in recent memory, Paulus “The Hitman” Moses remains humble and unfazed. Peeping from bludgeoned eyes, a visibly battered Ray Beltran ‘defeated’ Paulus Moses by unanimous decision and claimed the WBO lightweight title, and a United States of America Green Card as part of his winnings. Moses, on the other hand, was robbed off the title he once won in 2009, but emerged almost unscathed; a second-round cut on his face the only remnant of a fierce and bloody battle.
“I went to perform; I wanted to win. But it is the name of the game, to win and to lose. This was a big fight. This guy (Beltran) doesn’t finish fights; he beats people before the 12th round, and I think it surprised him and the home crowd that I was up for the fight,” said Moses earlier today at a welcoming press conference.
One of the talking points was the speed and versatility that Moses would have to display in order to defeat Beltran, who was making his fourth attempt for the title. Many considered that 39-year old Moses was at the twilight of his career, and as such, he was a 20-1 bet for the bookies as an underdog in Nevada on the night.
Promoter Nestor Tobias said the fans were surprised, but his team had prepared well and Moses’ performance was nothing of a surprise to his corner.
“The Champ (Moses) fought like a warrior, that’s because he is from the land of the Brave. Most people didn’t expect a world-class performance, but we knew our boy could do it. We studied the other guy and we knew his strengths and weaknesses. We know the guy has a mean left and that left is like a bomb!”
“But Moses is a legend in Namibian boxing, one of the first boxers in our academy and he has done a good job of marketing Namibia and Africa as a whole. We thank our sponsors, MTC, NSC, and especially the entire nation of Namibia for the support you showed,” added Tobias.
Speaking at the conference, Chief Administrator at the Namibia Sports Commission, Freddy Mwiya, said he was delighted at Moses’ performance.
“When a person represents their country, we as citizens should come together, even if they are not as successful as we had wanted. In this way we show appreciation to someone who represented our country to his/her fullest capabilities. You (Moses) have emerged with honour and respect in this world; your speed at 39 years is commendable,” he said.
Moses refused to call time on his career and insisted there is still more to come from him.
“I thank God, my mother, Air Namibia, NBC for screening the fight, and most importantly the entire country and fans that were supporting me. It is true that I am now 39, but I feel still OK. I still move well. I will find out what’s next after I sit down with my promoter and discuss the way forward,” said Moses.
Alluding to the final judges’ decision, MTC Corporate Affairs Manager Tim Ekandjo said, “To the three judges who dished out those score cards, you guys are a disgrace to boxing as a sport. Such corrupt behaviour has to be rooted out of sports, especially in boxing. We all watched the fight and saw the clear winner.” – Musa Zimunya