Kenya’s Christine Ongare lost to Irish Magno of the Philippines in yesterday’s flyweight bout, fair and square. No doubt about it.

The Philipino was dominant throughout the three rounds at the Kokugikan Arena, asking many questions of the Kenyan. Ongare provided little, or no answers.

And sagging headgear meant that the Kenyan lost concentration, and precious seconds adjusting it, playing to Magno’s advantage.

But for “Ghetto Girl,” brought up in the slums of Kariobangi North, merely making it to the Olympics is huge victory in itself.

She walked into the blue corner for yesterday morning’s fight to sounds of Third World’s reggae song “Now that we found love.”

One of the stanzas goes:

“Let’s give love a try

Let Jah control, control your destiny

We owe it to ourselves, yes we do

To live happy, eternally”

Very much Ongare’s philosophy.

Although she provided little resistance to the imposing opponent, “Ghetto Girl” seemed resigned to letting Jah take control.

“The fight was good, despite the fact that’s I’ve had little exposure, besides the one tournament we fought in Russia,” she explained.

“I have achieved my dream, and I’ve learnt a lot and I thank God for everything.”

What about the headgear?

Just 1:45 into the first round, “Ghetto Girl” was already adjusting the oversize gear.

“My head is small, and they didn’t have a smaller size than the one I used, and so it was quite challenging.

“I can argue that this is what cost me the first round.

“She was a patient fighter because having known that my headgear had issues, she could have easily gone for the kill.”

With Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, National Olympic Committee of Kenya President Paul Tergat and his predecessor Kipchoge Keino, among other dignitaries, watching ringside, Ongare battled bravely to the end, at times taking the fight to the powerful Pilipino despite the Kenyan’s tiny frame.

“The experience was great because I’ve reached where I really wanted to be – at the Olympics,” she reflected, with coach Musa Benjamin by her side.

“Although I didn’t get what I wanted in terms of medals, I thank God for everything, because when they count the Olympians, I will be among them.”