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Death of Zimbabwean boxer Taurai Zimunya raises questions

An unfortunate and tragic death occurred in Zimbabwe days after a boxer sustained injuries to the head in a professional non-title boxing match.

Taurai Zimunya, 24, died on Monday after sustaining injuries in a boxing match on Saturday, bringing up questions about the safety procedures in Zimbabwean boxing. It’s the first time in the country’s history that a boxer has died from injuries during a fight. Boxing was temporarily suspended in Zimbabwe during the height of the Covid 19 pandemic and had only just returned.

How did Zimunya die?

Zimunya was floored during the third round of six in a non-title professional match against Tinashe Majoni. Zimunya received a series of harsh blows to the head. He tried unsuccessfully to defend himself but Tinashe continued to hit him with no interference by a judge until Zimunya finally stumbled and fell to the floor. He was treated at the ringside before being taken to a hospital, but he never regained consciousness. The medical report has yet to be made public, but local reports say he suffered a brain hemorrhage.

Though the Zimbabwe National Boxing and Wrestling Control have said that medical procedures were followed, questions have come up about why this happened and what can be done to prevent it happening in the future. The general secretary of the Zimbabwe National Boxing and Wresting Control Board, Lawrence Zimbudzana said “for now we will focus on the burial, and then we will sit down and look at the issues.”

Zimunya’s father, Samson, was an amateur boxer in his day and had hoped his son would carry on the family name and become a champion.