What you need to know:
- Upon arriving in Kenya on Wednesday, Mandonga promised to explode bombs in the form of fists on Wanyonyi during their 10-round super-middleweight Saturday fight at the KICC.
- Armed with a new technique, dubbed 'Sungunyo', which he claims has been sharpened in Ukraine. The orthodox fighter is surely not from Russia with love but is from Ukraine with fury.
There are boxers then there is Tanzanian pugilist Karim “Mtu Kazi” Mandonga. The 43-year-old has fast gained celebrity status for his viral pre-match showboating.
If words would count in a boxing ring, then the big-talking Mandonga would be the envy of many in the boxing field if his comical statements before bouts are anything to go by.
In terms of pre-match antics, he is in the same league as two-time world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. But that is where the comparison ends.
While the 34-year-old British heavyweight fighter is known for inflicting pain on his opponents in the ring, Mandonga has always been on the receiving end in the few fights he has had.
In his latest bout against fellow compatriot Salim Abeid last year, the Mkundi native was at what he knows best with his hilarious pre-match interviews full of intimidation and bullishness.
However, when the match took place, Mandonga was sent sprawling on the canvas in the fourth round and lost the bout.
But does he ever learn? He was at it again in his matchup with Kenyan boxer Daniel Wanyonyi. The pre-match interviews have all been about the Tanzanian with the showman stealing the show against his more decorated opponent.
Due to his unending treat of comic relief, Mandonga has managed to steal the show by shifting the focus to him despite their fight being just a curtain raiser for the Rayton Okwiri versus All Ndoro bout.
Upon arriving in Kenya on Wednesday, Mandonga promised to explode bombs in the form of fists on Wanyonyi during their 10-round super-middleweight Saturday fight at the KICC.
Armed with a new technique, dubbed 'Sungunyo', which he claims has been sharpened in Ukraine. The orthodox fighter is surely not from Russia with love but is from Ukraine with fury.
The king of showboating says he is not in Kenya as a tourist but he is on a mission, which is to dismantle Wanyonyi, with all his decorated tale of the tape, and will stop at nothing but to floor his formidable opponent.
“I am going to explode bombs in his head. It is more than a fight. I have not come here to relax; I have come here for war. Whether Wanyonyi likes it or not, I will beat him. He will know why I am called mtu kazi,” he boasted.
Just like his orthodox stance, Mandonga has gained notoriety for his unconventionalism where while boxers gain popularity after showing exemplary skills in the ring, his are big-talks meant to throw off his opponents from the game.
Displaying some signature stunts, including punching trees with bare hands and running with heavy logs to intimidate his opponents, for Mandonga, there is a thin line between a win and a loss as he always maintains his usual bravado whether he loses or wins, which is a rarity.
Whether he suffers a knockout during a fight or not, the 43-year-old always maintains his antics to the extent of even doing crazy stunts as if he has won.