'Klassen is too good for Fana'

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Mzonke Fana won't last more than seven rounds against IBF junior lightweight champion Malcolm Klassen at the OR Tambo Hall in Khayelitsha on April 20.

This bold prediction was made by trainer Manny Fernandez who will usher Klassen to war when he bids for the first defence of the title that the Toekomsrus boxer won from Australian Gairy St Clair at Emperors Palace in November last year.

"Whoever thinks Fana is a top-range fighter must be dreaming," fumed Fernandez.

The mentor and his fighter will need nerves of steel at the venue that is a stone's throw away from Fana's house.

Anything that Klassen does on the night will count for nothing to local fans. They will all be rooting for Fana and even if he lands a punch on Klassen's gloves, they will cheer.

At 33, Fana is five years older than the fast and furious Klassen. Some fundis say it will be Fana's last big payday, while others believe that he can spring a surprise because of home advantage. Branco Milenkovic will stage the fight.

Fernandez wants Klassen to fight Cassius Baloyi after Fana. Fernandez and Baloyi's mentor, Nick Durandt, have been at each other's throats since Klassen dethroned Baloyi's conqueror St Clair.