Jimenez faces thunderous roar

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Venezuelan fighter Jose Jimenez will need nerves of steel to deal with the partisan crowd at Thohoyandou Indoor Centre in Limpopo tonight.

They will be raucously rooting for local boy Muvhuso Nedzanani in his attempt to win the WBF junior flyweight belt.

Retired knockout artist Philip Ndou, IBO junior lightweight champion Cassius Baloyi, IBO welterweight champ Isaac Hlatswayo and Tshifhiwa Munyai (Commonwealth bantamweight king), did well in putting the province on the world map.

Nedzanani, who is the reigning SA champion, will have all the support he needs to win an international belt.

The skinny fighter from Tshimbupse in Venda is tipped the win. His trainer, Rob MacLeod of Gauteng, has no inkling of doubt that "Hands of Thunder" will strike like lightning.

But MacLeod warned that Jimenez would be no walk in the park.

"I have seen his taped fights. He brings all the tools to work. So I expect a tough fight," said MacLeod.

He helped an unknown Munyai to capture the Commonwealth belt from highly rated Briton Martin Powers in England last year.

The fight, which will top the eight-bout programme that will be presented by Tshiawelo Promotions, will be broadcast live on Blow by Blow at 10pm.

Meanwhile, the third edition of the Baby Champs is scheduled to start at Sammy Marks Square in Pretoria at 1pm tomorrow.

On Sunday Irvin Buhlalu will bid for the fifth defence of the SA lightweight title against Khululekile Sibeko. The fight will be promoted by Eyethu Promotions at the Orient Theatre in East London.

Victory will guarantee the Durban champion ownership of the belt.