Friday, January 29, 2010
Clottey appeals to Ghana President for visa
WBO welterweight title challenger and Ghana native Joshua Clottey may be receiving the full support of his countrymen for his upcoming March 13th bout with pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao in Arlington, Texas. However, U.S. embassy officials in Ghana's capital, Accra, are giving the boxer fits.
Having denied Clottey's coach Godwin Kotey and his assistant Daniel Clottey could prove to be a big liability for a fighter facing the speedy and powerful Pacquiao. Clottey interrupted his training schedule and flew from New York to Ghana earlier this week to personally press his team's case for the temporary visas.
At a press conference organized by the Ghana Boxing Authority, several officials and boxing personalities were in attendance to support their fellow Ghanaian. Clottey, however, appeared emotional at the prospect of not being able to work with his trusted coach.
Modern Ghana reports that Clottey broke down in tears midway through his press conference due to his coach's inability to travel to the U.S. Clottey has repeatedly stated that facing Manny Pacquiao is the biggest fight of his career.
U.S. State Department officials remain extremely cautious with temporary visas, especially from applications originating from Africa, due to the negative fallout from being unable to recognize security threats that came from the continent late last year. Clottey is reportedly appealing to Ghana President Atta Mills to resolve the matter. Ghanaian officials are also said to be working behind closed doors with U.S. embassy officials stationed in Accra.
Working with a new trainer could prove costly for Clottey as he faces an unconventional southpaw fighter with speed and movement, and one who throws punches at a variety of angles.
Houston-based trainer Jay Johns offered his thoughts on the upcoming Pacquiao vs Clottey bout. Johns has worked with boxers such as Evander Holyfield, Kermit Cintron, Juan Diaz, and Omar Henry.
Author: Marv Dumon