Wed Oct 26 11:22:35 SAST 2016

Storm over Bergman's ranking

By unknown | Dec 09, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

It seems the hierarchy of Boxing SA does not know how to handle the issue of Jan Bergman's top ranking as well as his appointment to challenge Vincent Vuma for the SA junior middleweight belt.

That is how Loyiso Mtya, the Boxing SA's director of operations who doubles as head of the rating and sanctioning committees, exploits the situation.

This shrewd official waits for an opening, and pounces. His strength is that he is able to answer for his moves and that makes him smarter than even his employers.

Chairman of Boxing SA Peter Ngatane went on the defensive when asked for comment yesterday.

"What is wrong with Bergman?" he asked aggressively.

But after some explanation Ngatane said Bergman's approval to challenge Vuma was done when the former was still eligible. That was 21 months ago after Bergman's eighth round knockout of Namibian Gotlieb Shileka in Windhoek, his first fight in more than three years.

"Ratings go up and down every month. So an approval cannot be permanent. The ratings and sanctioning committee must review the situation again," said Ngatane.

But Mtya said they rate boxers according to how active they are, their record, level of participation and, most importantly, their potential.

"When we drop a top-rated boxer down in the ratings after a defeat we look at guys that will be above him as to whether they are indeed better than him," Mtya said.

"It is true that Bergman has not fought for a very long time, but if you look at the junior middleweight division no one except Page Tshesane is active and winning.

"Our demand is that an international fighter like Bergman, must have won one of his last two international fights to be eligible for a chance to challenge for a national championship.

"We then suggested Jan Bergman to the CEO who forwarded our recommendation to ratings governor Archie Jonas. If the board of Boxing SA says Jan cannot fight for the title, then that is it."

Jonas said yesterday he was not convinced by the recommendation, and would raise the matter at their board meeting.


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