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Keep 'Rose of Africa' blooming

By unknown | Sep 03, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

I want to congratulate Mzonke "The Rose of Khayelitsha" Fana for reigning supreme when odds were stacked against him last weekend.

I propose that this humble mannered pugilist from the shanty town of Khayelitsha in Western Cape now be called the "Rose of Africa".

He did what the previous three titleholders of the IBF junior lightweight belt failed to do - defend it once - he knocked the hell out of Javier Osvaldo Alvarez in nine rounds.

Cassius Baloyi is one of the previous titlists who failed to defend it. So did Gairy St Clair and Malcolm Klassen, whose reign was ended by Fana in April. Fana was given zilch chance against the more aggressive and clinical Klassen. But Fana handled Klassen capably and did so again last weekend.

Fana is a renowned scientific boxer. He fought an Argentinian who came forward all the time like a bull - and Alvarez forced Fana to change his style of fighting.

But still Fana outfoxed him at his own game before sending him down like a bag of mealies with a body punch in the ninth round.

Compliments must also go to Zola Koti. Many times when a boxer is praised for a big win, we tend to forget his trainer. Koti, a cool-headed mentor, is one of the best trainers South Africa has.

But Koti has never been acknowledged for his sterling job while Fana has won Boxer and Fight of the year, Presidential as well as the WBC Golden Glove awards.

Koti is not shy to seek help. He has been to various gyms to seek the best assistance and said he would continue doing so for as long as it keeps the "Rose of Africa" blooming. HAIL FANA THE KING - I take my leave.


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