straws at war

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

A battle of smart fighters between Zukisani Kwayiba and Tshepo Lefele will highlight a night of action next Friday, March 28 at the Carousel Casino in the North West province.

Kwayiba, the unbeaten World Boxing Council (WBC) International strawweight champion, will defend against Lefele, a former champion who is hellbent on regaining the title lost to Filipino Gabriel Pumar in March 2006.

Pumar was overthrown by Kwayiba six months later. He has since defended his title twice - against Sithembile Kibiti and Alex Aroy.

Kwayiba, who is affectionately known as "Troublemaker", stopped Kibiti in one, and outpointed Aroy in a majority points decision over seven rounds.

A power outage forced the premature end of the Aroy fight after seven rounds. It went to the scorecards, under WBC rules, and Kwayiba, who was unimpressive, emerged victorious.

The 22-year-old champion has seven knockouts from 10 wins. This left-handed boxer who left long-time trainer Mzamo Mapetla for Dudu Bungu, faces a wounded lion in Lefele.

This Free Stater, who fights out of Gauteng under esteemed mentor Nick Durandt, wants his title back. He was stopped in seven rounds by Pumar and was almost destroyed in round one by Jonas Kgasago six months later.

Those were his only losses against 18 wins (8 KOs) and two draws.

Lefele, who bolted from the stable of trainer Colin Nathan for Durandt, chalked up a points win against Pule Nhlapho in January.

Next Friday's fight will headline a six-bout programme dubbed "Champions Night" by promoter Branco Milenkovic.