Local fighters whipping boys

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Five of the six local fighters who were in action internationally recently, all became punching bags.

They are Soon Botes, Sam Ubokane, Andre Thysse, Rupert van Aswegen and Kaizer Mabuza.

Only Lovemore Ndou raised the bar. The "Black Panther", who is based in Australia, boxed his way to the mandatory position to challenge Ricky Hatton for the IBF junior welterweight belt.

Ndou scored an 11th-round technical knockout over Naoufel Ben Rabah, who did not come out for the 12th round.

In Germany, Botes was knocked out clean in the second round by Karoly Balzsay, while Ubokane was rescued in the first round against by Denis Boytsov.

Botes, who holds the national light heavyweight belt, suffered his 11th defeat against 26 wins while Ubokane's uninspiring record dropped to eight losses from 18 fights.

In Australia, Thysse, Van Aswegen and Mabuza were outpointed in their attempts to win IBF Australasian belts.

Thysse lost to Sakio Bika for the super middleweight belt. Van Aswegen was defeated by Paul Briggs for the vacant light heavyweight title. Mabuza was mastered by Robert Medley for the welterweight title.

The tough Mabuza, who is ranked second in the junior welterweight division locally, could have been ring rusty. He did not fight even once last year.