Super bout fit for Emperor at Palace
SOWETAN warned you not to blink or leave your seat during the boxing tournament at Emperors Palace on Saturday night, for you may miss a lot of action.
That was because we anticipated fierce competition from all the six bouts due to the evenness of the fighters.
We were motivated by the vagueness around which fighter among Kgotla Baeti, Tshifhiwa Munyai, Flo Simba, Thomas OosthuIzen, Jason Bedeman and Hekkie Budler would be introduced at the Ekurhuleni venue .
The tournament was dubbed "Prelude" and Munyai was the only debutant. Kicking off the action, "Bang Bang" Baeti punished Danile Bothman so severely that experienced referee Sazi Xlamlashe aptly stopped the brutality in the fourth of this eight-rounder lightweight fight.
Then followed the unveiling of a masterpiece, "Atomic Spider" Munyai who was poet in motion in the defence of his WBA Intercontinental bantamweight title against Richard Ferreras.
Munyai's breathtaking skills, dexterity and ring generalship brought the estimated 2000 fans to raptures.
Munyai won every minute of every round except for the 10th where he kissed the canvass from a well executed left hook to the jaw.
Munyai beat the count as if nothing had happened thanks to his good conditioning, and his trainer Elias Tshabalala.
Munyai rose to register a lop sided points win - the scorecards of 119-108, 118-110 and 117-111 were a a bit flattering to Ferreras.
Then came Simba "The Demolition Man" , who could have ended the career of Stephen Castle with a fourth-round stoppage in the heavyweight division.
There was pandemonium in the fight for the WBA Pan African lightweight title between Bedeman and Bilala Muhamad when the Ghanaian dropped Bedeman twice with stiff jabs in the first round.
Bedeman survived. He came back like a man possessed in the second round.
He threw everything he had and in the process staggered Muhamad, who finally went down for good from an uppercut to the forehead.
"Tommy Gun" Oosthuizen chalked up the first defence of his WBA Pan African super middleweight belt with a unanimous points decision over Thomas Awinbono, the Ghanaian who could do well as a wrestler.
Then came the moment that fans were waiting for when the "Hexecutioner" Budler took a stand against a battle-scarred Filipino Junaito Rubillar for the IBO flyweight vacant title.
Budler, 21, had only 13 wins going into that fight while Rubillar, 33, had 48 from 68 fights.
Budler started well winning the first three rounds but the pendulum swung Juanito's way from the fourth onwards but ended up winning a majority decision.
Judge Isaac Tshabalala scored it a draw at 114-114 while Lulama Mtya and Deon Dwarte scored it 117-113 and 115-113.
This was one of Golden Gloves' best boxing tournaments - told you so.