Vukuza-Mbilase rematch on hold

A purse dispute has floored the South African featherweight title rematch between Thando Vukuza and Leli Mbilase, which was to take place in East London on February 28.

A purse dispute has floored the South African featherweight title rematch between Thando Vukuza and Leli Mbilase, which was to take place in East London on February 28.

The fight was to be staged by Eyethu Promotions' Mzi Mnguni. Boxing SA (BSA) had ordered the rematch after the first bout between the two boxers in Carletonville in October last year ended in controversy.

The judges scored the fight in favour of Mbilase, despite the fact he received a merciless pounding from Vukuza, who even dropped him twice.

So outrageous was the decision that even Mbilase's trainer, Nick Durandt, admitted in a television interview that the wrong fighter had been awarded the fight.

The BSA ordered the rematch within 90 days after five independent judges reviewed the fight and scored it in favour of Vukuza.

The governing body said the promotional rights of the fight would be determined by purse bids with the winning promoter obliged to make a 60-40 purse split in favour of Mbilase, instead of the normal 75-25.

But Mnguni objected and demanded to be given the promotional rights as Mbilase's promoter.

But Mnguni could not reach an agreement with the fighters, forcing him to cancel the fight.

"Both fighters demanded exorbitant purses which I could not meet," he said.

BSA director of operations, Loyiso Mtya, said they would call for fresh purse bids. - Sapa

X