If the nation wants me to fight, I’m ready – Simon

By Michael Uugwanga

HARRY ‘The Terminator’ Simon has said his future in boxing is in the hands of the Namibian nation and that he is ready to fight at any given time, despite age no longer being on his side.

Simon, aged 44, remains unbeaten in his professional career that started in 1994 with his first outing in the world of professional boxing against Leon Van Rensburg of South Africa and his last fight against Kaminja Ramadhan at Ramatex last November.

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The former World Boxing Organisation (WBO) World Super Welterweight champion is not yet ready to quit the sport that he loves so much and is still hungry for sporting success, if opportunities crop up.

His son, Harry Simon Jr (22), has already stepped into his father’s shoes and is tipped to become the next Terminator. Simon Jr won the Namibian Super Lightweight title on 20 April, when he beat fellow Namibian boxer Festus Matias, and has now 10 professional bouts to his name and is yet to taste defeat.

Simon Sr. meanwhile believes that he is still the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world.

Simon who became a world champion in 1998 when he beat Ronald Wright of USA in the Welterweight division before he went on to win the WBO Middleweight world title in 2001 after beating Hacine Cherifi of France, spoke to Confidente Sport recently.

“Thank you for the question, but that (the prospect of future fights) you have to ask the nation if they really want to see me inside the ring or not,” said Simon.

His last title fight was in 2013 when he won the International Boxing Federation (IBF) International Light Heavy title against Geard Ajetovic of Serbia at Ramatex, but after that he only had two fights, against Japhet Kaseba of Tanzania in 2016 and Ramadhan.

Simon said he keeps busy in the gym, hoping for something to come up as he still wants to box until his body calls time on his career. He remains unbeaten from 31 professional fights.

Simon was the first Namibian boxer to win a world title, which opened up doors for other local boxers to enter the arena of world boxing, which includes the likes of Paulus ‘Hitman’ Moses, Paulus ‘Rock’ Ambunda and Julius ‘Blue Machine’ Indongo, all former world champions.

Moses is a former World Boxing Association (WBA) Lightweight world champion, Ambunda is a three-time world champion who held the WBO Bantamweight and the International Boxing Organisation (IBO) Super-Bantamweight world titles twice, while Indongo is a former IBO, International Boxing Federation (IBF) and WBA Super-Lightweight world champion.

“After you have asked the boxing fans in Namibia on whether they want me to fight, then come back to me,” Simon said.