Fernandez defends Hlatshwayo

INDIGNANT boxing mentor Manny Fernandez warned yesterday that NEO Africa should not throw stones because they live in a glass house.

INDIGNANT boxing mentor Manny Fernandez warned yesterday that NEO Africa should not throw stones because they live in a glass house.

This communications and events company announced at the weekend that it was suing IBF welterweight world champion Isaac "Angel" Hlatshwayo for breaching his sponsorship contract.

"They breached their own contract by not paying him since he left trainer Nick Durandt three months ago," fumed Fernandez yesterday.

It is alleged that Hlatshwayo has been taking sponsorship money from Bull Brand since he rejoined Fernandez.

"The man has bills to pay and a family to support. It's only right to get him a sponsor," said Fernandez.

He asked why NEO Africa chief executive Vivian Stasen did not take this matter up when Hlatshwayo left Durandt.

"This has swayed his attention. The man is left with only two weeks before his defence and they bring such a thing up."

Hlatshwayo was unavailable for comment yesterday.

His promoter, Branco Milenkovic, said there was absolutely nothing he could do because he is in the dark about the deal.

But he was present at a media briefing on May 20 when Stasen announced at the Rosebank Hotel that Hlatshwayo, Malcolm Klassen, Silence Mabuza and Evans Mbamba had signed with him.

These fighters were with Durandt at the briefing that took place few days before Klassen dethroned Cassius Baloyi for the IBF junior lightweight belt.

Klassen was given a car.

Stasen said their deal was worth about R2million and was for one year.

Sunday World reported that Hlatshwayo is being sued for jumping ship.

It alleged that Hlatshwayo is now with "one Rodney Berman" and no longer with Durandt.

But Hlatshwayo, who left Durandt three days after winning the IBF belt against Delvin Rodriguez in the US, has a binding contract with Milenkovic.

Milenkovic's Branco Sports Productions will stage Hlatshwayo's first defence against German Jan Zaveck at Wembley Arena on December 11.

Milenkovic said tickets were available at Computicket and Shoprite Checkers stores at R100 for ringside and R50 for ordinary seats.

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