Title fight saved from the gym?

Bongani Magasela

Bongani Magasela

The ball is in Boxing SA's court to decide if it gives promoter S'Phatho Handi and trainer Welcome Ncita more time to renegotiate a deal for the national featherweight title fight between champ Manelisi Mbilase and mandatory challenger Thando Vukuza.

Both parties had failed to reach an agreement, and Boxing SA decided to take the fight to a gym where both fighters will not be paid. It had given Handi until yesterday to produce signed contracts.

Handi told Sowetan yesterday he had offered the two fighters from Mdantsane R30000 each.

"Mbilase's camp says R30000 is too little. Thando Vukuza's camp has already signed," he said.

But Mbilase's trainer Welcome Ncita said they already had an agreement.

"I just need to go to Mbilase and talk to him about the purse money," said Ncita.

This situation was caused by Mbilase who turned down R40000 from promoter Mzimase Mnguni, demanding R70000.

Loyiso Mtya explained that the decision for this fight to be staged in a gym was because no bid came forth from promoters. The process had gone on for more than five months.

"I can confirm speaking to S'Phatho. He said he has reached an agreement with the two camps but I have not seen the contracts yet," he said.

"Once he comes with contracts, then the fight will be back to the normal way. But I must make it clear that this rematch will have to be staged in a more bigger venue.

"It will be insecure for it to be done in a gym in Mdantsane based on the support there."