Photo: Hoyantan won the king of arena duel

By Sulayman Bah
Leket, whose name translates as calabash, six-year unbeaten run in the arena came to an abrupt end last Sunday after losing to Hoyantan of Club Ndongo Ceesay.
Sunday night’s event had a new king installed as Hoyantan crowned king of the arena for the first time in Gambia’s wrestling history.
While Hoyantan’s backers merry in sheer delight the neutrals were left disenchanted after what was thought to be a thrilling epic clash turned out in the way no one expected, and by standard of both wrestlers, way below par.
The fight was predicted to stretch a bit but not the extent of eating into the allocated 30 minutes. To majority’s surprise, it was a drab one-way traffic affair –one that saw both wrestlers assume an uncharacteristic fighting pattern. Real-time wrestling mbapath style, it was hoped, will determine outcome of proceedings but Hoyantan anyway, ended up being declared winner.
Hoyantan is not the best of boxers but still came out boxing knowing well enough grappling with Leket could have him flat on the ground. The club Ndongo Ceesay heavyweight stuck to his game plan antics and it proved pivotal as he chased Leket outside of the sacks twice who had no answer to his adversary’s tactic.
The Barra-based wrestler and former Gambia national wrestling team captain had to be attended to by doctors after he bled for three minutes.
The pattern did not change going into recess. Hoyantan peppered continuous blows in desperate attempt to fending off Leket from coming any close to grabbing him as the game ended a draw but Hoyantan declared a winner on ground of two warnings.
Hoyantan is now being tipped to face ‘France’ of Banjul Saku Ham Ham in a rematch.
Below are photos of the events provided by Abdoulie Fatty
Photo 1: Build-up to the fight fans at the stadium gates and mineral bottled water sellers 
Photo 2: A zoomed view of the sellersPhoto 3: Security at the entrance gatesPhoto 4: Hoyantan’s crew in their ritualsPhoto 5: A commotion erupts between representatives of Hoyantan and Gambia Wrestling AssociationPhoto 6: Hoyantan breezes into the stadiumPhoto 7: Hoyantan entertains his supportersPhoto 8: Kunta Jr in his rituals of body-smearing with mudPhoto 9: Kunta Jr enters the sacks before the fightPhoto 10: Begue douses in holy waters before his rematch with Kunta Jr after he won the first meetingPhoto 11: Kunta Jr kneels in the sacksPhoto 12: bottled holy water is poured on Begue’s head via a besinPhoto 13: Begue fastens knotted jujus on his wristPhoto 14: defeated Leket looks onPhoto 15: Winner Hoyantan drenches in holy watersPhoto 16: Leket and Hoyantan squares
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