Chauke avenges his loss

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Oscar Chauke stopped short of labelling Springkaan Khongoane a pretender to the South African junior featherweight title after he outpointed the Free Stater in Giyani on Saturday night.

Chauke successfully defended his title in a fight that was scheduled for 12 rounds.

But it was not an easy match for Chauke against a fighting Khongaone who floored the Giyani pugilist in the second round.

"He did not send me to the canvas and he knows that. I just slipped and I proved to him that he does not have the nerve to fight me as the fight progressed," said Chauke, who was backed by a few but vociferous Giyani crowd.

"He beat me in 2001 and today I proved to him that his victory was a fluke.

"From now on I want to fight serious challengers to my title. But I must admit that I did not hit Khongoane as much as I would have loved to because he was always running away from me for the better part of the fight."

Manny Fernandes, who trains Chauke in Gauteng, said he was happy with his charge's maturity.

"Chauke is maturing with every fight, but I don't want to rush him into a world title fight. We will talk about it later this year or early next year," said Fernandes, the 2004 and 2005 trainer of the year.

Khongoane said he lost a fight he was supposed to have won.

"I think I was not just a pretender today and Chauke knows that. I gave a good account of myself tonight. The defeat has not demoralised me and I will continue to challenge for this title."

The boxing lovers from Giyani, who watched the fight with glee, made an impassionate plea to boxing promoters to stage more fights in the area.

Other results:

l Junior lightweight, six rounds - Gabriel Phakula stopped Peter Adams in the fourth round;

l Heavyweight, four - Mark Strydom registered a second-round stoppage over David Lekgwathi;

l Junior middleweight, four - Kenneth Hlaisi beat Theophius Mpakane in the second round; and

l Lightweight, four - Tshifhiwa Makonani outpointed Lucky Makhubela.