Fri Oct 21 18:50:29 SAST 2016

Big steps for SA's Baby Champs

By unknown | Feb 04, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Seventeen triumphant fighters from Boxing SA's Baby Champs development programme will have the honour of sharing the spotlight with some of the legends of South African boxing at Boxing SA's yearly wards ceremony at Carnival City in Brakpan on February 20.

Former IBF and WBA junior lightweight undefeated champion Brian "Mean Machine" Mitchell, former SA lightweight titlist Norman "Pangaman" Sekgapane, retired father of South African boxing Stanley "S.O.N.O" Sono, longest surviving matchmaker Ezekiel "Ziggy" Mtshali as well as 21 national champions will also be saluted.

Mitchell will be inducted in the Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota in the US in July.

Sono's excellent administrative skills earned him the Order of i-Khamanga from former president Thabo Mbeki - an award bestowed on individuals who have excelled in arts, culture, literature, music, journalism and sport.

The achievements by Mitchell, Sono, Mtshali and Sekgapane and the seventeen champions of the Baby Champs are a milestone for the pugilistic sport, says Bongani Khumalo.

Khumalo, Boxing SA's chief executive, assured yesterday that belts for the 17 champions have already been designed. Twenty-one national champions will get blazers with national colours.

"The sports minister Makhenkesi Stofile should do the honours on Mitchell but Stofile has neither confirmed his attendance nor declined [the invitation].

"Butana Kompela, chairman of the sports portfolio committee in parliament, has already confirmed his attendance while BSA's chairman Peter Ngatane will do the honours on Sono.

"We will also unveil 13 female boxers who will graduate from amateur to the professional ranks," said Khumalo in his parting shot.


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