WBF: No more mismatches

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

The sanctioning committee of the World Boxing Federation, which came under fire recently for approving opponents who proved mere cannon fodder for local fighters, has taken not of the gripes.

Howard Goldberg said yesterday that his organisation has guaranteed fight fans evenly matched and competitive fights in the future.

The Cape Town-based representative of the WBF in Africa said the first step in that direction starts on November 14 when Mlungisi Dlamini defends the WBF lightweight belt against Aldo Nazareno Rios.

Rios, from Centenario in Argentina, is a credible boxer who exposed Isaac Hlatswayo in their closely contested 12 rounder for the International Boxing Organization (IBO) lightweight belt in Brakpan in 2006.

"This is a tough fight for Dlamini," warned Goldberg.

Rios has chalked up six straight wins since losing to Hlatswayo.

Three of them were against Diego Martin Alzugaray, Sergio Daniel Ledesma and Nazareno Gaston Ruiz this year.

Alzugaray was stopped in nine rounds by Dlamini in Kroonstad in May while Ruiz was stopped in the third round by Cassius Baloyi for the IBO lightweight belt in Ekurhuleni in February last year.

Rios, 34, is the Argentinian champion. He boasts 46 wins (11 KOs) and four losses while the "Shark" from KwaZulu-Natal is yet to lose after 18 victories (12 KOs) and a draw.

He will bid for a third title defence. Dlamini stopped Jairo Moura dos Santos from Brazil in one round while Alzugaray from Argentina succumbed in the ninth.

But credit should be given to the WBF for presenting a superb championship fight last week between super middleweight champion William Gare and tough as nails Jindrick Velecky from Check Republic.

"The days of cannon fodder are over," assured Goldberg.