Former WBC International super lightweight titleholder Paul Kamanga is planning an anticipated ring return as well as a busy schedule in 2020.
The South Africa-based Congolese fighter, who last fought in June 2018, has now been in the gym preparing for a return to a South African ring to please his fans.
The 26-year-old Kamanga (21-2, 12 KOs) started his professional career in 2012 and won his first 19 bouts, all in South Africa. Along the way, he captured the WBA Pan African belt both at super lightweight and welterweight while securing his biggest victory in the form of a clean 12-round unanimous decision against former world title challenger, Kaizer Mabuza.
In the fall of 2016, Kamanga decided to sail out to international waters and challenged experienced contender Aslanbek Kozaev in his opponents native Russia. Though the African fighter fought exceptionally good, he had to settle with a close decision loss following a competitive bout.
Thanks to his honest effort in hostile territory, Kamanga got a chance to resume his career in the United Kingdom where he picked up a TKO victory before winning the WBC International title against Frenchman Christopher Sebire in late 2017.
In his first defense of the title, Kamanga had the privilege to fight the co-feature of a massive event against the extrovert prospect Ohara Davies at the prestigious O2 Arena in London. After a close first round, Davies landed a huge right hook in the last stage of the second that dropped the African hard.
Though a determined Kamanga managed to rise from the canvas, the referee waved the bout off.
“After my last fight I had to sit and kind of look back at my career,” said Kamanga to BoxingScene.com recently. “My career had been rushed for the most part then I had the two years in the UK so, I just needed to kind of take a break and spend some time with my friends and family. Boxing is a very hostile and lonely sport and you sacrifice so much for it and sometimes you just got to take a step back and kind of slow things down a bit.”
Spending time outside of the ring and gym helped Kamanga regains his hunger for the sport and now he feels ready to kick-start a whole new chapter in his career at just 26 years old.
“The goal now is firstly to hook up with a good local South African promoter who I can join forces with to take my career further. I only need two or three local fights to put myself back in form,” said the athlete, who, thanks to his always friendly and loveable character, is famous to pack the arenas whenever he fights in the Johannesburg area.
Reintroduce himself on the South African market, though, is just the first step of the still ambitious fighter’s desired journey.
“Ultimately, I want to go to the United States. You know I have been to Europe and as big as boxing is in Europe, America is bigger. In terms of TV networks and sponsors. The long-term goal is definitely America and a world title fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.”
It all starts with a step to the right direction and a re-energized Kamanga is welcoming the challenge.
“I miss the ring and I need to get back. I feel like a million-dollar I don’t think I have felt this good and happy in training for a few years.”