9th October 2006
By Heather Donald
On Saturday October 7th, a packed Charlottetown audience saw
Muzammal Nawaz of Canada knock out Gary Bonefant in the seventh
round to win the WFK-PRO World Light-Middleweight title. In the
first round, Nawaz hit Bonefant with a hard lead hook from his
southpaw stance. The punch hurt Bonefant and he was badly dazed. The
game American regained his composure and fought valiantly through
rounds 2-5 landing body attacks whenever he could. The highly
conditioned Nawaz kept the pressure on landing stiff jabs and hard
kicks at the end of each round.
In round 7, Nawaz again landed
another punishing lead hook and Bonefant took a standing 8 count.
The Canadian immediately jumped on his adversary hitting him
relentlessly with punches. Bonefant tried to cover up but to no
avail. He went down a second time but was unable to beat the
standing 8 count.
Nawaz won the prestigious WFK World title - his 4th professional
title with four different international sanctioning bodies.
The victory was meaningful for Nawaz as he had lost a bid for the
Middleweight title in Uzbekistan in April of this year. The tough
Vahid Roshni from Iran defeated Nawaz the Uzbek capital. With many
personal and professional commitments as Canadian Kickboxing
President; a coach to a team of elite level athletes; a father of 3
and with a full time career in the volunteer sector; Nawaz has
always been challenged to stay focused on his professional
For this important bout, he hired veteran professional boxing coach
– Chris Johnson, the former NABF Light Heavyweight Boxing Champion
and 1992 Olympic medallist – to train him for the bout. Nawaz put
his commitments in the capable hands of his colleagues while he
dedicated 10 weeks to train for this bout. Logging in 4-5 hours of
training a day, he prepared like a true professional.
Gary Bonefant was a worthy opponent as the #1 World ranked contender
with the ISKA and the current USKBA Intercontinental Champion. He
has also hired former World Champion, Tony Ventura to prepare him
for this bout. Bonefant also worked with professional boxers in his
preparations including Welterweight Boxing Champion Micky Ward.
With the bout being held in Nawaz’s home country he had the partisan
crowd on his side throughout the bout. A small but vocal American
crowd began a ‘USA’ chant in the middle of the bout, but was
deafened by the thousand + Canadians that began the ‘CANADA’ chant.
In the words Canadian official Vic Provost, ‘Muzammal looked like a
completely different fighter tonight.’ Many of Nawaz’s loyal fans
were pleasantly surprised at his performance in Charlottetown. An
ecstatic Nawaz spoke to the office after the bout, ‘I have to thank
Chris Johnson for his tremendous coaching and also to my support
team of my Osteopath, Gus Kandilias who kept me healthy in training,
to my manager Amer Mustafa who always believed I could achieve this
moment, and to my inspirational team of amateur athletes on TAZ to
whom I owe so much. I also want to thank the President of the WFK
Mr. Manouchehri who believed in my abilities to offer me this