Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
PFARISO Neluvhalani will be fighting more than Tendani Munyai for the Limpopo junior featherweight title in Limpopo next Friday.
Munyai will carry the inspiration, motivation and the never-say-die attitude he learnt from the late Mlungisi "The Shark" Dlamini, who passed away in an accident last Friday.
"I am dedicating this fight to Mlungisi," he said yesterday as he wiped away tears after the memorial service for Dlamini, which was held at Ellis Park Boxing Academy.
"I prepared this fight with him but since I heard about his death everything has just gone bad. A limb in my body is missing, but like a soldier I have to be strong and do it for him and our trainer Warren Hulley, who is in the same mental state as I am."
Munyai, from Thohoyandou, said Dlamini, from Esikhawini near Empangeni, played a major role in him joining Hulley in Gauteng in 2007. "I became Warren's No 2 boxer in the gym and I looked up to Mlungisi."
Dlamini, who held both the WBF and IBO lightweight belts, and his cousin Mandisa Maphalala were on their way to Bergville, where Dlamini's mother was born.
The accident happened between Warden and Harrismith. Mandisa died on the spot while Dlamini made it to Qwa Qwa Hospital where he died of skeletal injuries the next morning.
Mandisa will be buried in Bergville while Dlamini will be laid to rest in Esikhawini. Both funerals will take place tomorrow.
Dlamini, 28, was a charismatic and fearless fighter. He was undefeated after 22 fights.
Australia-based Mick Croucher, the WBF president, described him as a good person and a wonderful fighter who had so much potential.
US-based Ed Levine, president of the IBO, extended his sincere condolences and sympathy to Dlamini's family.
The memorial service was attended by Boxing SA chairperson Peter Ngatane, IBO representative in Africa Len Hunt, Dingaan Thobela, Leholohonolo Ledwaba, Isaac Chilemba, Stanley Ndlovu and Jan Bergman, while boxing commentator Dumile Mateza gave a keynote speech.
Hulley said: "On occasions we would spend four hours on specific moves. That dedication went far beyond anything that I've experienced with other fighters I have trained. I salute him - son of the soil."