MTK Global International Consultant Mike Altamura believes the advent of MTK Accra will play a significant role in a “golden age” for Ghanaian boxing.
Altamura is part of the team surrounding Ghana’s unbeaten world champion Isaac Dogboe and added Dogboe’s compatriot George Ashie to the MTK Global roster on May 21.
Just days later, news broke that work is beginning on an MTK Global gym in Ghana’s capital as part of a project involving John Manfo and Ellis Quashigah – two of Altamura’s Team Dogboe colleagues.
Altamura said: “In my opinion, I feel that in Ghana in particular, the will and ferocity is there but the standards of facilities and training environments are very primitive. If you see a lot of the gyms, there’s no ring. Kids are sparring on concrete.
“Hopefully, through having a world-class gym, it’ll help phase in a new era for boxing in west Africa. With the MTK Global link, we’ll establish connections so we can take hopefuls straight from the amateurs to offering them experiences all around the world.
“I think it’s an unbelievable step in the right direction. The wonderful part is that John Manfo has spent lots of time in the UK and Ellis Quashigah has spent lots of time in the US and they’ve gathered information and experience on their travels.
“They’ve travelled the world with boxing and are part of Isaac Dogboe’s team. They know what’s required and what needs to be in place in order to give the athletes the best chance to excel.
“There’s so much scope for inter-club competitions now. One day, in due course, we hope to see MTK Accra amateurs take on MTK Manchester amateurs etc. It’s such a positive step moving forward.”
Ghana has a rich history in boxing with the likes of Azumah Nelson and Ike Quartey having won world titles and most are optimistic Dogboe’s astonishing rise to the summit can inspire a new generation.