Baptism of fire for Lukas

Namibia’s former WBO, IBF and WBA Africa Champion Sakaria ‘Desert Storm’ Lukas is up for a world title shot – if he wins his next fight.

The Namibian will come up against American fighter Jessie Magdaleno in a non-title fight at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Lukas and Magdaleno are both looking to redeem their careers in a fight which carries huge significance despite being non-title.

Rated sixth by the International Boxing Federation (IBF) and ninth by the World Boxing Association (WBA), Lukas has the chance to become number one if he wins his next fight.

Trainer and coach Immanuel ‘Imms’ Moses believes Lukas’ next fight will be ‘make or break’ for the Namibian.

“We know that it’s not easy going to America and getting a positive result but Lukas is a top quality boxer who can conquer the world.

“It’s a big moment in his career because he has waited for fights of this nature for a very long time.

“Lukas has been training throughout December and I can assure you that he is ready to down the American,” Moses said.

Lukas boasts a record of 23 wins in 23 fights since he turned professional in 2011.

The Namibian has however not fought for a world title, despite winning and defending numerous African titles.

It will be Lukas’ first ever professional fight overseas, given that he has fought most of his bouts on home soil.

The fighter’s only professional away fight was in Zimbabwe last year where he defeated Ndodana Ncube by a unanimous decision in Harare. Lukas last fought in December when he defeated Malawi’s Raston Kayira by knockout at the After School Centre in Windhoek.

“We do know that we are travelling far away from home but I can guarantee you that our boxer is made for nights and fights like this.

“Jessie is a very good boxer who is also trying to rejuvenate his career and that is why we are expecting a tough fight.

“The good thing is that his last and only defeat was against an African boxer, Isaac Dogboe, in 2018.

“He also won his last two fights but not against a strong opponent like Desert Storm,” Moses noted.

The 28-year-old American comes into the fight having fought 28 times with only one loss in his professional career.

Magdaleno is currently ranked number two by the World Boxing Council (WBC) and number four by the WBA.

Global Boxing Stars (GBS) CEO and co-promoter of Lukas, Scott Patrick Farrell, insists Lukas’ fight is the beginning of bigger things to come.

“’Desert Storm’ is one of my favourite fighters and my team and I have worked long and hard to make this opportunity happen.

“It’s my professional opinion that Lukas has been long overlooked for years, but finally his time has come, and I am very pleased to be the one who has made this happen.

“It’s up to him to prove he belongs in the elite level of the world’s best featherweights,” Farrell added.

Jesse Jackson Kauraisa