Vetyeka gets a chance
SIMPHIWE "V12" Vetyeka received probably the best news of his boxing career yesterday when he was told that he was back as the mandatory challenger for the WBC's junior- featherweight crown.
The title is held by Abner Mares, who outpointed Eric Morel in El Paso in the US at the weekend.
After defeating Giovani Caro in a final elimination bout in Mexico in July, Vetyeka thought he had done enough to earn a crack at Toshiaki Nishioka when he was WBC champion, but it was never to be as the fight between Mares and Morel was sanctioned after Nishioka vacated the title. Instead of approving the boxer from Mdantsane for the junior-featherweight title challenge, Vetyeka was ordered to fight for the WBC silver crown against Victor Terrazas, which also served as an eliminator. But Vetyeka refused to fight against Terrazas, arguing that his clash against Caro was an elimination bout and he won't get involved in a second eliminator.
To prepare for his challenge, the 31-year-old Vetyeka, who is trained by Nick Durandt in Johannesburg, will trade blows with Klaas Mboyane in an eight-round bout at the Sandton Convention Centre on June 4.
"It was disappointing not to fight for the title after having won a final elimination bout. But I'm happy now that Nick has been told that the WBC has responded to our queries and reinstated me as No 1 contender and that I'm the mandatory challenger," said Vetyeka, a former South African and IBO bantamweight champion.
He added: "At the moment I'm busy preparing for my fight against Mboyane. It makes a lot of sense for me to be active as I have not fought since July last year."
Durandt said: "I have received an e-mail from the WBC advising us about 'V12' having been reinstated as a mandatory challenger to the new champion, Abner Mares."
This is going to be the second time Vetyeka challenges for a WBC title after failing to unseat former bantamweight champion Hozumi Hasegawa in May 2007.