A’asa to make his professional debut
American Samoa amateur boxing sensation Alapati A’asa, will be making his professional debut, when he steps in the ring in the Cruiser Weight Division against long time veteran Saipeti Muga Asiata of Samoa, during the inaugural Pacific Rim Boxing Championship (PRBC), this month on Thursday, May 31st as part of the upcoming Samoa 50th Independence Day Celebration.The event is hosted by Samoa.
The six international PRBC professional bouts will feature:
Heavyweight Division — Gogosina Ulutoa of Samoa against Temoo Temaititahio of Tahiti,
Cruiser Weight Division — Francis Mamoe of Samoa will take on former Samoa Olympian Farani Tavui, while A’asa will be taking on Asiata,
Super Middleweight Division — Iosia Nanai of Samoa will be fighting Savenaca Naliva of Fiji, and,
Welterweight Division — a rematch between Tony Iapesa of Samoa and Tinitua Neagle of Tahiti, while Michael Fonoti of Samoa will battle it out with Johnny Singh of Fiji.
Samoa News had a chance to speak with A’asa about his step up into the professional ranks.
“First of all, I want to thank God for the talent that he has blessed me with. I would also like to thank my coach and trainer Henry Tavake and all of the others who have helped me along the way,” said A’asa. “I have trained hard to make it this far and I cannot let anything stand in my way. My goal is just like every boxers goal and that is to someday become world champion. My coach and trainer Henry Tavake really believes in me and that gives me or any athlete a lot of confidence when your coach and trainer believes in you.”
“I wish to also become a great role model for the younger Samoan athletes here in the territory. I want to tell the young athletes to keep believing in yourself and never give up. Train hard and train all of the time, so when the time comes for to step up, you will be ready. I am ready to do this and I am ready to give it all that I have,” A’asa stated.
A’asa recently captured the ‘All Samoa Mosooi Amateur Championship Boxing Heavyweight Championship title on October 29, 2011, with a TKO over Galuega Mareko of Samoa.
A’asa’s coach and trainer Henry Tavake, who has been in the boxing business for over 30 years, said, “My boy is ready. If he wasn’t I wouldn’t let him make this step up. I have confidence in him. I have trained him and I know what he is capable of. This is going to be an exciting day when he makes his pro debut.”
Tavake went on to say that his amateur fighters have been invited by the Samoa Boxing Association to fight in the Prime Ministers Cup, which will be taking place next month on June 2nd.
He explained that “first A’asa turns pro and then we fight for the Prime Ministers Cup. I have to keep my guys active. They can’t sit around and just train. They need competition. We are ready. Let’s do this.”
Here are the amateur boxers from the Henry Tavake Boxing Club who will be fighting in Samoa on June 2 for the Prime Ministers Cup:
Riley Tuala — Heavyweight
Siaoasi Tanoa Jr. — Middleweight
Kelepi Fata — Light Welterweight