Mnguni casts out charges

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

Is Zolile "Bonecrusher" Mbityi being used as a pawn by his manager Mzimase Mnguni to fend off promoter Rodney Berman, who proposed an Eastern Cape derby between Mbityi and Masibulele "Hawk" Makepula for the IBO belt?

"No," says Mnguni, who no longer enjoys the affinity he had with Berman before Mnguni formed an alliance with Branco Milenkovic.

Golden Gloves publicist Terry Pettifer announced last week that Mbityi and Makepula will fight for the vacant IBO flyweight belt at Emperors Palace on April 21.

But this match-up is off.

Berman, who at one stage of his cordial association with Mnguni was described by the latter as being "like a father to me", said: "A R60000 offer was accepted but Mnguni later demanded R80000.

"We must alter our plans, in lieu of the fact that Mzi continues shifting the goalposts, or should I say, his purse money demands.

"If that's the case Hawk will be facing someone else, it's as simple as that. Makepula will in all likelihood be squaring up to an opponent from abroad.

"I firmly believe that Mnguni is running scared of his boxer fighting Makepula and to disguise the fact, he is pricing his charge out of the match."

Mnguni guided Makepula to victory for the WBU, WBO and IBO belts. They parted ways four years ago and the former Olympian teamed up with trainer Nick Durandt. Mnguni said he holds no grudges.

"I am willing to work with any promoter and I was doing it for Mbityi," he said.