By Frank Bonada
The 2023 IMMAF Africa Championships have wrapped up, with the next generation of African MMA stars announcing themselves to the world of Mixed Martial Arts.
One athlete impressed in particular, who now joins the likes of Eliezer Kubanza as a two-time IMMAF Africa Champion. That man was Angola’s Maurio Silva, whose title-winning performance in 2022 is deemed one of the top displays of martial arts prowess in IMMAF Africa history.
The Angolan Bantamweight went the distance with the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Cedrick Kalenga, with all three of the judges scoring the bout for Silva.
Silva will now likely have his eyes set on competing at the 2023 IMMAF World Championships, which were recently announced. The final IMMAF event of the year is set to take place in Albania , and will have fans from all across the globe tuning in to watch the proving ground ‘Where Stars Are Born.’
Silva has previously competed at the IMMAF World Championships, unfortunately coming up short. He will undoubtedly be looking to springboard off his achievements in Africa to claim glory on the world stage.
Whilst Silva will take the headlines, praise must also be given to the IMMAF newcomers who seized upon this opportunity to compete on Africa’s highest-profile amateur MMA stage. Angolan athletes Garcia Pinto Kinkela and Mario Stefan, who both defeated former IMMAF Africa champions in the semi-finals, went on to claim gold medals in their respective divisions.
Damian Muller captured gold for Namibia, overcoming Angola’s Mafuana Mbungo via unanimous decision in the Senior Men’s Flyweight division. His countryman Veja Hinda was looking to join become a two champion, having won gold in 2022. However, Hinda was unable to overcome Clelio Diogo, coming up short on the judges’ scorecards.
Representing the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Josue Eli Wawina submitted Helmer Garcia, winning gold in the Men’s Junior Welterweight division.
IMMAF will now look ahead to the 2023 IMMAF World Championships, which will take place in Tirana, Albania, between 20 – 25 November, with tournament registration taking place on 19 November.
For a full list of results from the 2023 IMMAF Africa Championships Finals click right here.