Alfred Kotey Interview

By Ike Enwereuzor

22.09.01 - Former WBO Bantamweight champion Alfred Kotey now (24-7-1) with 15KO's from Accra, Ghana currently managed by Yoofi Boham will square off against unbeaten WBO jr lightweight Acelino Freitas of Salvador, Brazil (29-0) 29KO's in a non title 10 rounder on september 29, at Miccosukee Indian Gaming in Miami, Florida. This event will be televised Live on Showtime and around the world.

Kotey, the oldest of 5 brothers and 4 sisters also held the British Commonwealth belt and WBC International. Kotey represented his Country, Ghana in 1988 Olympic Game. He captured the WBF lightweight title on April 7 when he TKO'ed Anthony Maynard in the 6th round in Wembley, England.

The WBF lightweight champion started his professional career on November 20, 1988 after the Olympics with an impressive first round knockout of Viper Tagoe.

He won his fight WBO world title at batamweight July 30, 1994 with a 12 rounds decision over Rafael Del Valle. Now at lightweight, Kotey's future plans is to step down in weigh, maybe to 126 pounds and contest for another world championship before he retires. "I want to take on all champions at featherweight before I quit boxing, said Kotey. "I most had a chance to fight Prince Naseem Hamed but I know I'll fight for the title again soon."

The former WBO champ is currently preparing for his September fight at Gleanson Boxing Gym in New York. Here's what the former world champion had to say.....

How is preparation going for your upcoming fight with WBO jr lightweight champ Acelino Freitas in Miami, Florida sept 29?
We've been training hard for about a month now. I wish this fight September 29 was a title fight. I'm prepared for anything but I know I'm going to win. I'm only scared of the judges not the fighter. I've a lot of experience in the ring he can't do anything to me. I'm going to surprise people. I thank the promoters and Showtime for this opportunity. I was sparring with WBO Super bantam champ Agapito Sanchez, Bantam world Champ Mauricio Martinez and others.

Please, tell us your thoughts of Freitas?
He's a good fighter but looks like a rough fighter. I'll have something for him that night in the ring. He's a strong guy and push you back but he hasn't fought Alfred Kotey yet. The guys he fought in past I'll beat all of them because I'm a veteran in this game of Boxing.

What do you want to tell your fans?
I love my fans and want to tell all of them including Ghanaians that I'll do my best and I'll surprise Freitas. Everyone will be happy after this fight. I want to thank them for their support. Again, I wish this was a title fight. I want fans to come see a great fight or tune in on Showtime.

How would you describe your last fight April with Anthony Maynard in Wembley, England?
Good fight for me. I won the WBF lightweight by stopping him in 6. I may move down to featherweight to fight all the champions.

Tell us about your contest for the British Commonwealth title?
It was an easy fight for me, that guy wasn't in my class.

What was your fight Rafael Del Valle for the WBO bantamweight belt like?
He was good but I dropped him, he got up and stay up thoughout the 12 rounds. For the WBC International the promoter Frank Warren wanted me to loose so I couldn't challenge Prince Hamed, he knew I was good enough to beat Hamed but after a lost I never got fight for two years but I had a 3 years contact with them. I hate the politics in Boxing. In fact, if you watch the fight you'll see that I didn't loose that fight.

Your impression of Ghanaian fighters like Ike Quartey & Azumah Nelson? Quartey was my team mate in 1988 Olympics, he's got money now. I don't think he wants to fight anymore. We're good friends and we did a lot of thing together in amateurs. Azumah's doing fine in Ghana, he has his own gym and trainers working for him. He was a boxing "Professor" like everyone in the world knows. I learn a lot from him. I'm very good like these guys too but I never had a good promoter like Quartey and Azumah did, that's my problem in this sports. If I had a good promoter I would have gone far.

What was your amateur record?
I started boxing in Ghana and had a record of 35-4. I won several medals, I won Gold in Holland 2 Bronze in Cuba and more.

What do you think of boxing in Africa?
Our people love boxing too but Boxing needs help in Africa our leaders don't invest enough money in boxing. They think boxing is for street boys, they don't realise that it's a sports. It can change peoples life but they need to give our youth the opportunity to go outside Africa and put their Country on the map. I hope that African boxers home and abroad can assist to better the sports in Africa. Even, the Chairman of Boxing in Ghana don't let boxers travel anymore.

What's your prediction of the Hopkins-Trinidad bout?
I think Trinidad will beat Hopkins but it will be a rough fight.

Thanks for taking out time to chat with us, Best of luck!
Take care, Ike


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