'Schoolboy' Tinago laid to rest

GWERU - Boxing icon Langton “Schoolboy” Tinago was yesterday laid to rest at the Midlands Provincial Heroes Acre in Gweru.

Hundreds of people drawn from administrators, boxers and fans braved the chilly weather as they gathered at the Midlands Provincial Heroes Acre to bid farewell to the legendary boxer.

Tinago yesterday broke another record becoming the first sportsperson to be buried at a heroes acre which has for long been a preserve for politicians.

Many who spoke at his graveside spoke highly of Tinago, describing him as arguably the best sports personality to emerge from Zimbabwe.

“Schoolboy is a three-time winner of the sportsperson of the year and runner-up on the fourth time only Kirsty Coventry can come close to him,” permanent secretary in the ministry of Sport, Art and Culture Prince Mupazviriyo said.

Boxing promoter Boris Znider described Tinago as one of the best boxers not only in Zimbabwe but the world over.

“I am surprised that people say this is a loss to Zimbabwe only, to me it’s a loss to the boxing community the world over because he was not just a Zimbabwean champion but a champion the world over “ Znider said.

Thomas Kambuyi, a board member for the Zimbabwe Boxing Control Board glowingly spoke of Tinago’s history and records describing him as a fierce fighter who never backed down from any fight.

“He turned professional on July 5, 1967 and his last fight was in 1988, it was a successful career that saw schoolboy winning 65 amateur fights, and in his professional career he won 86, lost 20 and made three draws playing 932 rounds of boxing”

“There were two places you would find him, at the gym or his home; he never refused to fight and never asked who he was fighting; Tinago would instead ask how much was the fight paying” Kambuyi said.

Tinago passed away last Tuesday morning at Gweru General Hospital after a short illness.

He was a decorated boxer who won three Commonwealth titles during the peak of his career.

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